Jimmy Ouma hands out equipment while Lizzy Mair looks over at Libby Olson and Kairo Mair during the soccer camp they put on in Akonjo village in Kenya. (Photo contributed)

Salmon Arm women’s experience teaching soccer in Kenya subject of documentary

Rough cuts of film on soccer camp in Akonjo village to screen at Classic on Dec. 23

If you’d like to see what three Salmon Arm women were doing in a village in Kenya earlier this year, your chance will soon be here.

Lizzy Mair, Libby Olson and Kairo Mair spent just over a week in Akonjo, a village of about 2,000 people in east Africa, in February of this year.

There they led a soccer camp. Expecting about 20 girls, 35 showed up. The week was filled with learning both for the Akonjo girls as well as the Canadian women. Their hope was to help the girls form their own soccer league, in a village where options in life for girls are few.

Olson, a film student at Capilano University in North Vancouver, filmed the experience with one of her fellow students who accompanied them, Samuel Wangai.

Read more: Soccer takes students raised in Salmon Arm to Kenya

Read more: Salmon Arm women bring soccer to girls in Kenya

Read more: 2012 – Evening of music Feb. 18 provides education for girls in Kenya

The rough-cut version of the Project Akonjo film is now complete, and Olson will be sharing it with the community.

On Monday, Dec. 23, the pre-screening of the documentary will take place at the Salmar Classic theatre from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m., doors open at 2 p.m.

Admission is by donation with all funds raised going to a Christmas soccer tournament in Akonjo being put on by Jimmy Ouma Okello. Okello is a staunch supporter of girls in his village and he hosted the Canadian women when they visited.

Nine years ago, Okello came to the Shuswap as part of a cultural exchange. That cultural exchange, which was built on a collaboration between Cathy Stubington of Runaway Moon Theatre and Okello, planted the seed with Lizzy for the soccer camp. Through that exchange and over several years, 16 girls in the village have been supported financially by the Shuswap to complete their schooling.


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