The FITB has expanded into Ethiopia and South Sudan with a recent training course held by Philip Kakungulu of the Uganda Tchoukball Association. Travelling to Addis Adaba and Gambella region in Ethiopia, Philip was supported financially and logistically by the FITB in his efforts.
Starting in Gambella, Philip began his work with Nuer young people from Gambella with attendees from Jewi and Kule refugee camps as well as 25 other participants from inside South Sudan. They loved the concept of tchoukball and especially its non-violence dynamics and possibilities for people to have a social space for community transformation. After further travel in Gambella Philip found a skilled smith to make tchoukball frames within Ethiopia. The FITB sponsored equipment was also used with a frame left in in Gambella plus one net and a starter pack for the local volunteers. Julio Calegari, Director for International Development with the FITB, explained the process.
"Leaving FITB frames in Ethiopia is a great way of encouraging sustainable development. Skilled Ethiopian workers can now manufacture their own equipment using the FITB models as a basis for their work."
Philip also established some great local contacts in Ethiopia for the development of tchoukball as well as new contacts in South Sudan, the world's newest country. Further trips are planned for South Sudan in the future to build on this progress.
Philip commented on the enthusiasm and determination of the new trainees:
"There is already discussion about forming a national team for South Sudan and for Ethiopia. The promotional DVD in the FITB starter pack is being shown to the Nuer young people in Gambella. They are also organizing a major tchoukball exhibition in February in Gambella. The training will involve more than 2000 young people. The number of people who have shown interest is massive."
Moving on from Gambella, Philip travelled to Addis Adaba. Making several key contacts in the capital, Philip set up city officials with the required information and expertise to deliver tchoukball. Plans are already being made to deliver tchoukball to all leaders from all the tribal regions of Ethiopia and also 5 leaders from each University. Officials in Addis are also keen to establish direct links with the International Development Director of the FITB, Julio Calegari.
Chris Huang, President of the FITB paid tribute to Philip's achievements:
"The FITB would like to thank Philip and the Ugandan Tchoukball Federation for their enormous efforts. The FITB can resource some local initiatives in Africa, but ultimately it is the hard work and spirit of local volunteers and the buy-in of government officials that will determine how successful we are. Philip's efforts with limited resources are amazing and an inspiration across the tchoukball community wherever in the world you are."