Homa Bay is set to bring football home after the County Government signed an agreement with a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO)Acakoro Football Academy for the establishment of a sports development academy.
This partnership will see the construction of a state-of-the-art sports academy and an academic institution in Kanyamwa-Kosewe ward, Ndhiwa Sub-County to benefit children of ages six to14 years.
The premier academy will be established on 20-acres of land provided by the County Government and funded by the Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) to a tune of 3.5 million US dollars.
Speaking after signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Acakoro General Manager Mr. Lucas Mott, Governor Gladys Wanga said the agreement outlines a long-term partnership for the development of talent for the entire region.
“This project will open up Homa bay to opportunities in hosting major sporting events.
We are happy that out of the 47 counties, Acakoro with the support of the Austrian people have chosen Homa Bay for the setup of the academy,” said Wanga.
Founded in 2013 through Kenyan-Austrian partnership, Acakoro has over the time become Kenya’s leading football academy that combines quality education alongside sporting activities.
Once established, the academy will offer both sports and education to the children until university level. “This partnership is unique as Acakoro does not just set up an academy alone but also an education institution to allow children to learn as well as engage in sports,” noted Wanga.
As a training center, the academy will have two football fields in its first phase, primary and secondary schools, administration block, staff and children accommodation, a dispensary and a community resource center.
The academy whose construction is set to commence mid-April will also accommodate girls alongside boys, and benefit children from all over the country in developing their football talents.
“We are enthusiastic about this project because as part of our agreement, there will be a percentage of children from Homa Bay as the academy progresses,” she said, adding that the project will offer scholarships to talented youths to pursue their dreams and employment opportunities to the locals.
Mott said they wanted to actualize the dreams of young Kenyans through a combination of sports and school. “We have seen the land and are assured that it will accommodate all these things. We have a holistic approach here, with a combination of community engagement, sports and school,” he noted.
On his part, the Austrian Ambassador to Kenya Dr. Christian Fellner said he was looking forward to more partnerships with Homa Bay County.
By Sitna Omar