Tuesday, December 18, 2012

‘Amani Mtaani’ Football Tournament.

The year is coming to an end and I’m  looking forward to ushering in the new year 2013, a lot is expected in the new year being the year our Nation shall be celebrating its 50th birthday, the year of  jubilee.  Never the less it is good  to take account of the year 2012 which has had its share of  tribulations and triumph, thus with insightful reflection it will help us if possible not to repeat the same mistakes hence fasten our seat belts and cast our net wider for greater opportunities in 2013.

God has been so great to me this year like many other years in my life, I’m thankful for the support given to me all around the clock that granted me the opportunity to travel to Germany and the latest being Arua in  Northern Uganda.  As one of many Kenya who embrace diversity and wants peace to prevail in our country I have always challenged myself and my friends to initiate activities that shall unite all Kenyans even with less resources.

After launching the tribes42 T-shirt campaign One Nation – One People: My tribe is Kenya… (http://wilsenx.blogspot.com/2011/08/what-is-your-contribution.html) I feel more encouraged  to engage the youth in other activities that could help them spend  their time in a meaningful way especially in December.  December being a festive season and  almost all the schools , colleges and universities are closed at this time, and looking at the local sporting scene some of the leagues has ended,  thus leaving many of us glued to our televisions watching overseas leagues, movies etc. This trends leaves many young people wandering  around in the community in search of how they can use their time effectively or even try new experiences which some might be misleading.

“Amani  Mtaani” means peace in the community,  and with keen observation on how we usually spend our festive season in December  I have organized  a football tournament dubbed “Amani Mtaani”  whereby ten teams compete in a league basis play off and finals to be payed on the 26th December 2012. The main objective of this tournament is to preach peace and have the youth play together and forge new friendships despite their tribes and political affiliation. The most important rule of the tournament is to shake hands before and after each much and we strongly recommend praying together after the match despite the results.
My plea to everyone especially the youth!

“ You don’t know the importance of PEACE until you lose it… Don’t let the evil spirits torment your mind at the expense of losing peace… Let us cherish peace and live to maintain it forever. Happy festive season! @Wilsenx

“There’s nothing like broken dreams… Keep on dreaming whilst you search for your success in the puzzle”. @Wilsenx
Metro Wazee versus Mathare North Rangers during the on going 'Amani Mtaani' football tournament organized by Wilsen Initiative. The match ended 1-1


Thursday, November 22, 2012

The Untapped Potential in Our Society.

In spite of their youthful energy and desire to succeed, many young people remain marginalized, unemployed and lack the voice in the decisions that affect us every day.

 I believe that if young people are given an environment and support to showcase their talents, skills, ideas, and projects, they shall be the source of positive social change, inspiration and creativity. At Wilsen Initiative (https://wilseninitiative.wordpress.com) which a community youth led initiative I founded, we strive to create the much needed platforms for youth to express themselves and connect with others in whatever areas of professionalism and interest. I/We shall nurture talents, spot talent from the grass root level and connect the youth with opportunities around them and beyond.

One of the issues I hold dear to my course is having a society that people respect each other and embrace diversity. I believe in a change that start with oneself thus my slogan; the champion in you… which illustrates that everyone has the potential to do something that can add value in their community. Youth being the bigger population in my country Kenya, we are left vulnerable to all manner of vices from crime, drug abuse, political polarization, unemployment etc. I can’t say there is no support at all from the government and NGO sectors but what needs to be done particularly in my country is to support youth led initiatives and tap the emerging talents by utilizing them to reflect positively in the society and create a community of positive role model which is dying.

 An idea would be to strengthen the youth empowerment programs especially in education and sports by offering opportunities to the less privileged youths who have the zeal to pursue further studies but due to unavoidable circumstances they are forced to indulge in bad behavior like alcoholism and crime which completely shut their dreams. My story is exceptional have beaten all odds to curve a career out of football and were it not of the courage and support I was given, I wouldn’t have made it this far. This is a perfect example of making it in life without a degree which is one great document in our society.

Degree and diplomas are important documents in our society and I don’t dispute these facts, but there are many young people with exceptional hands on skills, talents or passion to do something great but they lack the much needed systems, moral support or environments to see themselves as the next Chief Executives Officer a great company established by them, Attaining a degree is one step thus acquiring practical experience and self drive to do something you desire is another despite any obstacle on the ways. I’m really inspired by Richard Branson and Bobby Dekeyser story and for that, let us all support the youths around the clock. We are a treasure of our countries and the global community!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Wave of Love – United Kenya...

Like the ocean, lakes and rivers in this beautiful nation called Kenya, we need to spread the spirit of love (Love Waves) and encourage peaceful cohesion of it’s citizens and visitors through our work, events, deeds, thoughts, speech etc. Anyone can start the waves no matter who you are in the society. It's not meant for any particular group or people, we are all actors even if in a small territory and we don’t need to wait any longer to start the positive waves across our nation; upholding the the three important pillars which are Peace, Love & Unity. Have you heard of the Mexican wave in sports which is now a culture in Kenya during sports events? In brief, there are many theories surrounding where it exactly started, some people say it is during the World cup in Mexico in 1986 and other say it was started during the Olympics or by an individual ; but look at its impact internationally across the different cultures and creed. It is incredible! For more about the Mexican wave in sports kindly read http://www.guardian.co.uk/notesandqueries/query/0,5753,-21439,00.html

I’m filled with a lot of hope when all our leaders come together for the sake of this great nation like during the hero’s day ( Mashujaa day) celebration every 20th of October . Thus, this shouldn’t be the only platform for them to come together but, an everlasting practice even during different avenues of political affiliations or ideologies. Recently, I was at the Nyayo national stadium watching our national team play against the South African national team ( Harambees Stars v/s. Bafana Bafana) and to my amusement I felt once again as a true Kenyan whereby being part of the big spectators or fans who streamed in the stadiums with all regalia and paraphernalia bearing our national colors. Don’t underestimate the importance / power of a nation’s flag and its colors; it does Unite, Inspires, Identify, Rejuvenates etc. Even though our team lost 2-1 during the international friendly match, I was really happy to see my fellow Kenyans turnout in large numbers chanting songs of praise to our national team and the nation at large.

 It is my sincere wish and hope that this should be consolidated in all events and gathering whether political or non-political...

In every inspiring moment I leave a mark or trace and that is why I channel my energies and creativity by running a T-shirt campaign in different series. I hereby would like to introduce to you the Wave of Love – United Kenya which is inspired by the Kenyan citizens coming together for the love of this great nation either in sports events, public event etc. It's time for everyone to share and spread the love and start this wave most especially during this election time. "A positive wave starts with one person and that person can be you…" Wilsen Initiative



Love Wave T-shirt  : United Kenya designed by Wilsenx
 

The waves of the sea 

"The waves of the sea help me get back to me".

Here is a competition for you to try it out...

What is your expression of love?  Send your originally designed / crafted idea to info[at]wilsenx.com to stand a chance of winning United Kenya T-shirt. The T-shirt is out on sale but we shall award one top idea. Please don't send computer illustration... Think and Develop!

Note: The winner shall arrange for collection or shipment of the t-shirt!




Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Increase Your Net Worth As a Young Person.

After my trip from Germany I have been pondering and asking why do we young people find ourselves on the failing trail? I came to realize that most of the young people never take stock of what they want and  what they  have done in life.  Most of the time young people move with the flow for example  in choosing a career path, dressing code, how they spend leisure time, friendships etc. Some of the reasons why young people fail are for example, and not limited to below;
  1. We don’t follow our dreams or even worse we never listen to our inner voices.
  2. Never take stock of what we want to do and have done.
  3. Never follow up on  projects started.
  4. Lack of patience.
  5. Hang out  with the wrong friends.
  6. Imitating others and lack the drive or the courage to be original
  7. Procrastination and lack of self confidence.
  8. We want instant payment and we are afraid to volunteer.
  9. We care less with the our little hard earn finances by purchasing unnecessary (impulse buying)things rather than save for the future. This doesn’t mean all the youths are like this there are many exceptional cases,  but through the systems that most of us underwent we are financially illiterate. Among others…
If there’s something we can’t place a price tag on, is the human kind we were created in God’s image and we can’t be compared with anything  and we are  installed  by the almighty Father as the supreme being on earth. My definition of worth here is determined by what you can do or have done to get other opportunities. Failing once in life doesn’t mean you will fail forever and even if you got an E- grade  in your O’level doesn’t mean the ‘END’  to life, though it is a wake up call to try again and do more about searching for  something that you can do better for  example by exploring other avenues like business, sports,  talent usage, technical skills, art and design etc. Some of us are blessed with either business, creative, leadership acumen that we ought to utilize them to increase our worth in the society.

Recently I came to  notice there people who have reached a point they never submit their CV’s  / resumes in search for a job because their development track records speaks for itself and is evident when you mention their names and they are at another level of ball game thus their net worth is super!  In this case instead of looking for work, the work awaits for them or are created to fit them in any system. I will spare mentioning names for this time round but open your eyes wide and look around your society and you will have many answers.

My advice to young people in terms of increasing or boosting their Net Worth are;
  1. Be a specialist in your area of operation either in music, ICT etc. Do it at your level best!
  2. Develop a Unique Selling Point which can be even the people skills, Quality Assurance etc.
  3. Strive to learn something new every day, watch your learning curve growing.
  4. Don’t enroll in a course because of a friend or even with your parents  persuasion. Listen keenly to the advice given and make the decision, and by doing so you shall have the zeal all time with you.
  5. Don’t do things primary for money but rather focus on how you can land many assignments like the current one by giving quality products or service.
This is all for this month till next month,  and if you have an article you would like posted on our platform kindly don’t hesitate to share with us and the rest of the audience.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The World of Information Flow from My Own Spectacles!

Last month (August 2012), I had an opportunity to travel to Kampala- Uganda on our scheduled mentorship program organized by my employer (Nairobits Trust). During the mission, I had the opportunity to ‘criss-cross’ the streets of Kampala mostly in the day time because I’m not a night person. At night, I generally prefer to relax either by watching television, reading a book or doing something on my computer. This might sound boring to you, but I love what I do! I want to acknowledge the team of Kampabits staff and students who are dedicated to working tirelessly to seeing the Bits (www.nairobits.com) philosophy expand its roots to the deepest part of Uganda. Usually, when I meet and work with passionate people anywhere in this planet, I get inspired by the environment, people, daily routines, transport system just to mention but a few. The outcome of my learning expeditions either results in personal traits, creative projects or even deeper appreciation among others.

The bottom line is that I get to learn something new which is part of self discovery that never ends. Like the Chinese saying “A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step” I am embracing exactly that to infinity. On the contrary, when I was on a mission in Kampala, I was surprised to see what content (content is King or Queen as asserted by many authors!) is exposed to the public especially the children without mentioning any newspapers or publication. I was shocked to see especially one type of newspaper that is accessible to all and to me I could term it ‘adult content’. I might be wrong in my understanding and interpretations, though it is amazing to see and learn from diverse cultures and to realize what the young minds are exposed to without their knowledge on what the consequences of this might be.

During one outing in Nairobi with my friend Mr. Mbarak from Zanzibits, we had a chat in a joking manner explaining that we have been sold almost everything in this world as consumers; and  I don’t know what is left which has not been sold to us on the streets... Just a few weeks ago, somebody was claiming that if you drink your own urine you get some therapeutic medication.

I’m not a scientist neither I’m I a doctor to ascertain the claim, but to me the ordinary ‘mwananchi’ (citizen) I’m puzzled by the events that surrounds us.

If the type of information or content spread across isn’t a concern to stress my point, on the weekend before the opening of schools for third term, I decided to attend this event which was supposed to be a family fun day .I like the zeal which they created the awareness in all media platforms without leaving an inch of information which indeed pulled a big crowd thus this was really encouraging and strategic.
Before the event kicked off, I captured some interesting points that are worth learning from;
  • If you create big expectations you have to match them even if it’s a free or a paid event.
  • Keeping time is still a taboo; this was quite evident by the event starting late.
  • Test you systems prior to the big day and get quality equipments. Remember that cheap is always expensive. During the event the systems did fail and I can’t confirm the reasons…
What left me wondering is where our nation is heading to especially in nurturing the next generation of responsible youths. During the event, I was awed from the way the master of ceremony spoke to the children when they failed to be the best during the dance competitions. Even though it sounded funny to the parents, I wonder if it was the same for the children trying to fit in their shoes. Secondly, the type of music played and the outfits of some artists’ to me wasn’t fit for the audience present; bearing in mind that most of them were children. Or it is me who is growing old? Please help me here...

The children in the event were accompanied by their brothers, fathers, sisters, mother s etc. These are people who are very dear and close to and the artists ought to check their language and gestures when they are addressing this group. Additionally; the Dj’s ought to choose an appropriate mix of songs since there is a pool of playlist/genre for different audiences.

Let us not use creativity in the wrong perspective at the expense of holding to good practices or traditions like dressing and the style of dancing, especially when your audiences are young minds. Let us not intoxicate their minds by thinking in a certain direction.

It is high time for parents to follow what their children are exposed to; either music, games, film, television programs, fun days etc. It is a shame when the event organizers somehow don’t put a keen consideration on their target audience and the impact they want to create.

Life isn’t about selling products only without contributing to the well being of the consumer even if it is information oriented. It is my plea to event organizers to re- think and give an in depth awareness campaign when organizing events. For example, by having appropriate playlists or even live performances that match the expected audience.

Are you familiar with this term GIGO! It’s mostly used in computer programming meaning Garbage In Garbage Out! So don’t be caught unawares!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Kenya My Future...

How much do you love your country? I was born in Kenya and I love my country as much as I love myself, it is part of my life. I have heard many of my colleagues complaining and wishing to live in other countries other than Kenya, little do they know what our beloved country has got to offer because of their limited movement around the country and abroad due to especially economical situations or limited opportunities.

In foreign countries, there are quite some developments which can’t be compared with our country but on the contrary, there are unique things that you can only find here in Kenya that makes me a proud Kenyan. I’m really looking forward to the Olympics and I wish team Kenya will do us good as usual. My biggest wish would be that we have the Olympics mood with us forever more because during such global events we usually come together as one Nation and we forget our tribes, the politics and other negative affiliations that surround us.

We should embrace our cultures because that is also what make us proud Kenyans, thus we should shun negative ethnicity by all means. Sometimes I don’t want to watch the news because it is predominated with bad news and politics. All in all, I thank the government for establishing the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) www.cohesion.or.ke/ which has seen a reduction of all manner of polarization on tribal lines; NCIC never give up! On the other hand, it is astonishing how we have promoted our local tourism that we can’t even enjoy the flora and fauna of our country.

The problem is that we are unfortunate that we were born on the crack side of the country like the slums and other deplorable situations, but this is not what Kenya is made of, apart from the beautiful natural sceneries there are other precious values of life like hospitality, happiness, peace, love and unity that are rare to find in other countries and Kenya is one of the destinations you can’t miss these values. It is high time we open our eyes and vote wisely and refuse to be used to dive into tribal cocoons. Rather, we should open our eyes wider and see the bigger picture called Kenya and engrave the true spirit of peace, love and unity in our hearts and make Kenya one of the greatest havens in the world.

I have come to appreciate the true value of education and if you are educated and informed, no one would influence you to act before thinking. Let us educate our sons and daughter because Kenya belongs to them and we need to make sure we pass on the baton in a peaceful and prosperous county. Here is a question to you, what have you done for Kenya to make sure we either live in harmony with each other? A sober advice: You don’t need to be a politician to influence positive change in our country, it all starts with the small things we do, say, think and even share.

 As the founder of Wilsen Initiative it is my sincere hope that one day we shall roll out our sport tourism project starting with football to make even bigger contributions in uniting all Kenyans using sports as a vehicle to our destination. The main aim of this project is to create linkages, tour our country, and learn other cultures and the end result being peaceful cohesion of people and appreciation for our country whereby everyone feels fully responsible in developing the Kenya that we want.

“A country never prospers when the good people remain in silence and do nothing in making sure they shape the paths for a prosperous nation”. Wilson Masaka Picture by Wilson Masaka ( Wilsen Initiative Founder), on the picture Tecy Kimberly and her Mum. High resolution picture available for billboard campaign…
By Wilson Masaka: “Love & Passion for what we do shall make us prosper” Lastly a big thank you to everyone who purchased our tribe42 t-shirts which is one year old since we launched it, for those that haven’t gotten a copy and would love to purchase , kindly get in touch with Wilson.masaka@gmail.com

 

Monday, July 16, 2012

Wilsen Initiative - Sport Tourism

Mathare North Rangers FC (MNR) is a product of Wilsen Initiative which nurture’s youth talents in football. It is a community club with the following goals;
  • We connect the youth with their community and beyond, whereby forging lasting friendships using football.
  • We envisage traversing our country by playing friendly matches and tournaments that will foster understanding of cultural diversity of people in Kenya and beyond.
  • We use sports tourism to help the youth explore more about their country and communities while learning about why they should embrace diversity in cultures, tribes and trends around. By doing so we shall be contributing to the National fabric of peaceful cohesion of people either directly or indirectly.
  • We also envisage to play in the top league of the Kenya Premier League (KPL) but at the moment it’s not the prime goal why the club was established, rather we would like to connect the youths with opportunities in football around and beyond, basically exposing their talents and urging them to use them to acquire new skills and opportunities.
Club history
The club was established in the year 2010 by Kamuzi Banda (Ex-AFC player), Kennedy Anyango (Nairobits alumni) and Samwel Kimindiri (Trainer at Nairobits). The club was called Rangers F.C though it didn’t have any links with the Rangers F.C (http://www.rangers.co.uk/) in the United Kingdom or Posta Rangers in Kenya whatsoever. It was just a group of friends coming together to play football for fun and participate in MYSA (www.mysakenya.org) zonal league, the team lacked a lot things from uniforms, footballs, leadership and talented player s, and this was expected because their major goal was to play for fun. Early in 2011 the three founders of Ranger F.C in Mathare North approached Wilson Masaka (Founder of Wilsen Initiative/ Web developer / ICT trainer at Nairobits) for a proposal to steer  the ‘ship’ with his many valuable experiences working with the youth, community  and  being well exposed football player having played in the Norway cup in 1997, 1998 and 1999 respectively.

At first Wilson couldn't just say yes, because as he had mentioned he didn’t want to do something that only him had the passion, so he was hesitant to repeat past experiences whereby he helped a group of youth establish a football club which was misguided by the passion of some of the youth of ‘get rich quick’ mentality or what’s there for me attitude expecting everything from one person while contributing nothing.

After many persuasion and assurance ( by Kennedy, Samwel and Kamuzi) Wilson could see a new dawn in generational change in youth who were seeking guidance, very passionate and ready to cooperate in seeing their team grow by actively participating in administrative issues of the club and that’s exactly what Wilson was looking for in a team. 
When Wilson Joined hands with the three founders the first thing was to re-brand the team and giving it some unique visibility around and beyond.  Some of the new ideas brought by Wilson and the team are;
  • Ranger F.C changed its name to Mathare North Rangers F.C (M.N.R) inspiring champions…
  • The team bought one uniform(18 jerseys ) which are all written the name of the team
  • One member of Wilsen Initiative donated one set of uniform (18 jerseys)
  • We have at least seven footballs of good quality.
  • We are expecting new uniforms from Wilson’s friend from Germany early August 2012.
  • A part from the material gains we have a great match of skills and talent within the team and everyone is working together in making small contributions when it’s required.
Having mentioned all this team still needs more support to help us reach our vision especially in our sports tourism program to engage the youth even further and link them with opportunities.
So if you have an idea or a football team and you would like us to do an exchange with your team or organization kindly write to info[at]wilsenx.com or Wilson.masaka[at]gmail.com

We thank everyone for the support offered so far to our club and general direction of Wilsen Initiative.
Official T-shirt designed by Wilsenx (Wilson Masaka)




Team Officials
Wilson Masaka – Head coach, Thomas Abungu – Asstitant coach, Team managers-  Kamuzu Banda, Samwel Kimindiri, Kenndey Onyango, Team Captain- Edwin Kipkoech


Written by Evaline Akida ( Asst. Secretary - Wilsen Initiative)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The flip of a life time experience

When I was enrolled to the D&F fellowship academy in Hamburg  I thought that ten weeks was too long to be away from home and I was really worried on how I was going to cope in a new environment. Little did I know that the ten weeks well populated with educational, fun, meet the people tours, presentation activities etc, was after all not even enough! During the last week before departure I wished that more months could have been added for us to continue learning. At some point I had mixed feelings of either staying even longer or going back home because I found a new home (D&F- Hamburg) away from home.

 My first feelings before living to Hamburg changed due to the fact that everything at D&F academy was professionally planned that made me feel relaxed and optimistic daily. It is hard to come to terms with the reality that I’m now back home in Nairobi- Kenya , but with time I will fully adapt to the working cultures and the social aspect of Nairobi once again which is quite different to my Germany experiences for example I loved time culture, transportation, communication and the general infrastructure.

So far there’s a lot I miss from being with my co-fellows working on our dream plans, challenge session, working and walking together etc; that gave me an opportunity to fully discover my potentials and the true spirit of working in a diverse society that has open new horizon for me in terms of personal growth. Sometimes time runs really fast that you wouldn’t know what you have achieved especially if you are fully occupied with what you love doing and passionate in succeeding with your dream project at heart, mind and soul, while the best part is having it clearly written with implementation plans and general strategy to reach the stars. If there’s something I’m a proud of this year it will be my experience in Hamburg and the feeling of being back home (Kenya) full of energy and inspirations to make positive impacts.

Now I’m back in Nairobi and everything feels relaxed and I’m thankful to my family, Nairobits, D&F and everyone else for the support they offered me while I was home away from home. I’m elated to see everyone again working hard and happy despite our living situations! I know a lot is expected from me but I can assure you this is the new dawn for full discovery of my inner self and I will continue to inspire many youths and realize my dream project. To my co-fellows let us all make sure the network grows stronger and your memories will always last forever in my heart, mind and soul, thanks for playing a part in shaping my life by being such a great team, I learned some new trades of life from everyone. All the best with your dream plans till we meet again in this ‘small’ world but in the mean time let us meet in the cloud… (Online).




More about my coming soon initiative check www.wilseninitiative.wordpress.com

And the video channel at http://www.youtube.com/wilsenx

Saturday, June 16, 2012

A day of Optimism

True inspiration comes when you surround yourself with optimistic people. I’m honored to be among the fifteen fellows here at the D&F academy in Hamburg on the sports coaching fellowship. It’s now exactly two months before we leave to our home countries and I remember vividly when I arrived on the 16th April 2012 I had no friends or family member in Hamburg and the only thing that I knew was to stay in Germany and participate in the fellowship program which the milestones were clear for the next 10 weeks which was communicated to me before.

I was very expectant of many things with a lot of worries in mind if what I read was really going to be true and this is a normal feeling I guess many people have when they travel to a place for the first time and to make it even worse no one knows you. I’m very confident and happy now to share my feelings of optimism after all that I have learned from my co-fellows, D&F staff and experts. One of the greatest things I will leave with back home is a clear road map of my dream project which I was able to think through together with my colleagues and D&F team who helped me clear the mist ahead and see myself succeeding no matter what challenges I might face.

 I arrived with a forest of ideas and for me to get a clear way through my project, D&F academy offered me the best learning environment that I didn’t have a chance to experience before considering my background. This experience makes me even feel inspired with a lot confidence in solving the puzzles that I will face when I’m back home be it organizational or life in general.

In my bag pack back home I have good memories from day one till the last days to come and now I have a big family in Hamburg who believes in me and my project that instill the feeling of courage to stay on the course to discover my potentials even further. I love the adage “A picture is worth a thousand words” my experience here in Hamburg especially on the two optimism days could neither be captured on pictures or even words and that is why my new version of the adage is “It feels different if you smell or taste the food” This is a metaphor meaning in this context when you experience an event real time it is quite different when you watch it on TV or get story narration from the third party.

One of my best times in Hamburg I would say is optimism day and the visit to Dedon company even though all the days I learned something special either from people around me, sports project activities and generally all the environment I have been to. So for one to succeed in life many of the things I have learned are; Be optimistic in life! Smile and believe in yourself. Surround yourself with optimistic people and people who believes in you. Take every moment as a learning point.

Don’t expect everyone to say YES also try to understand and learn why others said NO. Embrace diversity! Don’t be selfish pass on the knowledge to the next generation. Change starts with you so think possibilities and be positive. See opportunities in difficult situations.

I hope these few notes will help you even become optimistic in life, I have realized that the first thing I have done today is to wake up early before everyone else and write this article. I’m really inspired by my good experiences at D&F academy.

Adrienne Morgan founder of www.morgan-hammond.de & musician, Wilson Masaka and Oya Ogurcu board member at D&F and Interior designer www.odesign.com.tr 

Long live D&F !

Article by Wilson Masaka ( Founder of Wilsen Initiative) D&F fellow – Hamburg, Germany

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Tips on How to Start Your Sport Initiative

Today I am going to share with you four easy steps on how to set up your sports initiative. I have a strong background in sports in this case football; I have played in the regional league in Kenya and participated in the Norway cup which is an annual international youth tournament in Norway in different years. Currently I am the head coach of Mathare North Ranger F.C which is a small community club I founded with my colleagues in the slums of Mathare North in Nairobi, Kenya. Football spirit or if want to call it ‘blood’ runs in my family lineage whereby my father used to play active football, one of my brother and three sisters too plays football in Nairobi, Kenya at different levels.

My fellowship at D&F academy in Hamburg, Germany has been able to offer me the opportunity to learn more while I share my vast experiences gained by coaching a group of youth while also learning other important skills to make me realize my dream plans in life and impact positively in the entire world.

Sport has been the root source for many successes in my life from education, work and currently I am on a fellowship here in Hamburg, Germany. I am strong advocate for sports for development whereby it has impacted positively in my life by creating connections in my life most particularly shaping my career path. This is why I want to share with you four easy steps that will help you start your sports initiative that you are passionate about, and as a result it will create avenues for youths to use their energy positively and discover more about themselves and opportunities around. The Four steps to consider while starting your sports Initiative;
  1. Decide on the sport.
  2. Develop your mission and vision.
  3. Create a support team.
  4. Spread the word.
Step 1: Decide on the sports. You need to decide on the sport that you want to engage in, for example is it football, rugby, hockey, basket ball etc. The most important of all you need to have passion in the sport and understand the rules of the game. It also helps when you have experience playing the sport.

Step2: Develop your mission and vision. Create a mission and vision statement for your initiative. Ask yourself; Why? What? Who? When and How? questions that will help you craft your mission and vision statements.

Step 3: Create a support team You need a team of passionate people to work with and help you in achieving your vision, as the adage goes “No one is an Island, together we stand divided we fall” I believe in that saying and it is a philosophy I have used to be successful. So connect with likeminded people…

Step 4: Spread the word Finally step four, get the message out and get to be known for what you want to achieve and share that knowledge, skills and experiences because everyone discovers something new while working on a project. I am very glad to share this precious life experiences and I hope it will help you even come up with great ideas and sports projects.

You can’t miss to watch this video; How to start you sports initiative by Wilson Masaka D&F fellow from Kenya.

 If you have any direct questions please drop me an email at wilson.masaka [at] gmail.com

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Recycling Starts With You.

In every household there’s trash which is collected after use of plastics, papers or food stuff etc. The same trends are found in offices and factories, the question is how do you manage your waste? It might not be a surprise but the truth of the matter is that we need to invent new ideas of managing waste from our homes, to our offices and the environment in general. Proper Waste Management (PWM) will save us time and money thus making our cities clean and safer than before.

 We need to cultivate the culture of respecting our environment and understanding the importance of recycling and learn from other countries how they do it. Currently I’m in Hamburg- Germany and it is amazing how people respect the systems that are in place from trains, pedestrians path, bicycle paths, designated playing fields and every place that can be accessed by people with special needs just to mention but a few. For example there are no conductors on buses or trains.

 They use what is called ‘honest policy’ whereby you need to get your ticket to the designated machines before boarding, even though if you are caught without a ticket by the inspectors on random check you are charged around 40 Euros (Kes 4,000) on the spot, no bargaining. So how can we instill the same discipline in our African continent is the patient question here, I’m learning a lot from the systems here in Germany as much as I can and all the answers are written on the ‘walls ’. It is high time we change how we think and do things as a nation and learn from other countries.  I would urge the authorities in charge if they happen to visit this great nations, in terms of infrastructures, they should pick best practices and deploy them to our own context.

As a best practice, I love the way trash is managed here in Germany whereby the sorting starts right in our homes. There are special colors for containers for plastic bags that either takes in plastics, glasses, food stuff etc and this is an universal trend with clear writing and graphics to guide you where you should place the trash, unlike in my home country where a big percentage of everything is put in one big plastic bag and the sorting done later in the dumping site. You won’t believe how it is in the slums even though there has been some improvement on how waste management is handled, which has offered job opportunities for the many youth in Kenya.

I must commend the youth initiatives and organizations who are working tirelessly on waste management in our country by turning trash into cash.  If the country could start adopting the sorting process right from our homes and across the streets, the returns would be immense. Left Picture: An example of trash bins with clear labeling to help in the sorting found at the train stations.

Best practice;
Supermarket bottles machine ( Pfandautomat ): For every bottle or plastic containers especially for beers and sodas etc,  they can be taken straight to the supermarkets and placed on a machine which gives a receipt voucher that you can either buy something in the supermarket or get an exchange for cash. This is a great way to encourage the public to recycle right on time with ease.