Beginning through the sheer hard work and determination of one woman, the Agnes Zabali Boys & Girls Club of Kamengo was initiated in 2006 by Agnes Zabali and supported by her friends in Uganda and Canada. Since its inception an Ottawa-based Committee has been working in partnership with The Canada Africa Community Health Alliance (CACHA) and the AZBGC Youth Committee in Kamengo, Uganda to ensure the growth and sustainability of the project. The Ottawa Committee is responsible for fundraising to ensure that orphan and vulnerable children and youth can go to school and that all children and youth in Kamengo have a safe space to participate in recreational activities, and to access homework help, computers, children’s books, art supplies and local musical instruments. Funds raised go towards school fees and educational materials for 155 children and youth. The underlying goal of the AZBGC project is to support education, health and wellbeing of vulnerable children and youth of Kamengo so that they can be part of developing long-term solutions for their community.
The AZBGC programs are designed to provide a safe, supportive and inclusive space where every child, youth and adult is respected and valued. Our Canadian and local volunteers model hard work, honesty, fair play, positive attitude, cooperation and respect for self and others. We believe that all young people can be responsible, contributing and self-reliant members of their community. Children and youth are the center of everything we do. Senior students are responsible for looking after the AZBGC – cleaning the building, the common area and tending the gardens. It is through working and playing together, particularly playing basketball, that the children and youth in the AZBGC program learn respect for themselves and others, fair play, the value of collaboration and an ethic of care. We support basic health, education, field trips & recreational activities to empower the youth to develop healthy lifestyles, a lifelong passion for learning, leadership skills and a sense of social responsibility.
The AZBGC partners with Ottawa-based CACHA and the Ggoli health centre (in Kammengo) on annual CACHA medical missions to Kammengo that are hosted by senior members of the AZBGC. In March 2016, CACHA embarked on its eighth medical mission at Ggoli Health Clinic in Kammengo. Across a period of 10 days doctors and other health professionals will treat over 3000 patients from Kammengo and surrounding regions.
The AZBGC project continues to use education and training in sports as means of enabling and encouraging children and youth of Kammengo to become young leaders by following our core values and ensuring that programs are developed in an effective, locally-owned, sustainable, transparent, and accountable way. We also continue providing local infrastructure in a way that will strengthen the capacity of orphans and vulnerable children to manage the challenges they face and to improve their economic status by creating employment.