Premier Skills Coach Educators receive certififcates at the closing of the legacy phase of the project, in March 2018. ©

British Council Uganda

Premier Skills is a partnership which combines the reach of the British Council with the global appeal of the Premier League to engage young people, including disaffected youth, to develop life skills, coach skills and English language skills, through the medium of community-focused football. The programme provides opportunities for coaches, referees and players to become better integrated into their local communities, to develop their skills for employability and raise their self-esteem. Premier Skills currently runs in 29 countries across Asia, Africa and the Americas.

How does it work in Uganda?

Community Coaches receive custom-made training that aims to improve their skills in deliver engaging, inclusive training programmes to benefit their local communities. They engage both the communities and children on the street while they are attending soccer clinics. Through soccer clinics, football drills delivered by Coach Educators and Community Coaches who have undergone face- to –face training on Child Protection, are used to pass on key transformational messages where children are educated and challenged to make safer decisions.

What are soccer clinics?

Soccer clinics are interactive football drill sessions designed to improve the children’s basic football skills and address challenging situations in their lives.  In these sessions, children also interact with former street children who share their experiences and success journey from the street to fame. At the clinics, children are also fed and have access to legal pro bono serves and interact with child welfare officers attached to police.

Our Impact

Premier Skills in Uganda

Premier Skills was launched in Uganda in September 2008 engaging 30 Ugandan grassroots football coaches selected from across Uganda in intensive training provided by Premier League coaches. Since then over;

  •  200 coaches have been trained in the Premier skills methodology.
  • 33,467 coaches, leaders and children both directly and indirectly have been engaged on the programme

Currently, through trained community coaches British Council Uganda, in partnership with the Ministry of Gender Labor and Social Development, Ministry of Education and Sports, Federation of Uganda Football Association (FUFA), Children at Risk Network (CRANE), Retrak Uganda and other significant stakeholders involved in working with children of the street in Kampala district, is empowering, transforming and restoring hope to children on the street.

Soccer gives hope to children on the streets of Kampala

Through our Premier Skills Programme, British Council together with key stakeholders is using Soccer Clinics to empower, transform and restore hope to street children.

On 10th February 2017, 107 children who have lived and others still living on the street had the chance to interact with trained Community Coaches and Coach Educators. Playing soccer and doing other physical exercises opened them up to team-work and not the usual “survival for the fittest” instinct as portrayed by each of them when they first came to the clinic - they constantly argued, barely agreed on anything, sometimes they physically fought each other. However, remarkable change was seen by the time the soccer clinic commenced. Soccer as a game highly encourages team-work and cooperation for success. During the games, each player had a chance to be part of a team hence building a spirit of brotherhood and sisterhood amongst them.

Living on the street has meant shelving their past life, especially for those who had a home before and family names they identified with. While on the street they are known by their heir new street names such as Black Jesus and Kaloli (translated as marabou stork in English) .Some nicknames represented a symbol of power, while others symbolised weakness. Introducing themselves during the soccer clinic enabled them get a better understanding of the concepts of identity and culture and with the intention of guiding them to apply their learning to understanding the beliefs, behaviour and attitudes of themselves and others.

With the aim of restoring hope to the Children on the Street, British Council invited a former street child, now transformed; Ps Wilson Bugembe, to share his journey to hope with the children. This is his story;

BY the time he was 10 years old, Wilson Bugembe born in Masaka district, the voice behind the enormously popular song Mukama Njagala Kukumanya (Lord I want to know you) and “Yellow” - his street name, had lost both his parents and an elder brother to AIDS. Before he was 15 Wilson would see two brothers, Denis Kutesa and Isaac Kirabira, also die to AIDS.

After the death of his parents and siblings, Wilson faced life all alone. He was mistreated and poorly treated by those that had earlier on promised to help him. With no shoes, one yellow tattered shirt and a pair of shorts, Wilson left what was called home and decided to face the world alone.

Forced to live on the street, he slept in public restrooms and ate from the garbage heaps in Kampala. At one time, he attempted to commit suicide and it was at this low moment that Wilson was picked from the street by a loving family and given a home and education.

Having been affected and infected by the plight of HIV/AIDS and community rejection, many of the children broke down into tears as they identified with Wilson’s life story.

Wilson is now a Pastor, gospel singer and founder of an organisation that restores hope to children who are living on the streets of Kampala. He promised to support the Premier Skills (Soccer Clinics under the Premier Skills) program so that with his story and change, children on the streets of Kampala could have a transformational change through football.

Coach Profile - Willis Muwanguzi

Willis Muwanguzi is one of the coach educators who facilitated the Premier Skills coach training in Gulu District in September 2015. Together with Stephen Bampigga also a coach educator, the dual are involved in a campaign to ensure that football management from top to bottom is first class.

It is against the meeting of great minds that think alike, that Muwanguzi chose to become a football delegate, seating in the Federation of Uganda Football Association (FUFA) general assembly.

Pushing through international best practices in Ugandan football remains an endless fight; one that Muwanguzi is not ready to let go. It is thus for that reason that he is involved in running football teams and academies in his respective area of jurisdiction.

Willis also plays a crucial role in the management of the lower division leagues. He monitors the fixture list and the technical aspects of proper football management from referees. He is also ensures the coaching of footballers following the right manual and making sure that football equipment is available.

Although he is largely based in Kampala, Muwanguzi realizes that the lack of football equipment for many upcoming footballers across the country remains a deep concern. Muwanguzi specifically pointed out how the coaching skills they have got and imparted, will not produce much fruit if the equipment situation does not improve especially in the rural areas.

Coach Profile - Haruna Kebba

For a while, Kebba was known for his refereeing credentials as Federation of International Football Associations (FIFA) referee back in the 1990s up until the 2000s. He travelled places on the African continent to officiate football matches and here at home. He was entrusted with top league clashes because of his ability to control and manage games without much incident.

But when he retired from refereeing in 2006-2007, he surprisingly went into football coaching. “My passion for coaching was insatiable, which is why, even as I continue to guide young referees, most of my time, I spend it coaching,” Kebba said.

Kebba has coached Kira Young FC and The Saints FC most recently in Uganda’s top-flight league. He currently handles the football team of Islamic University in Uganda (IUIU) in Mbale, Eastern Uganda.

With football academies buzzing in his home area of Kibuku District in Eastern Uganda, Kebba has injected much of his effort in tapping into the football talents there of both boys and girls.

Speaking of girls, Kebba’s experience in handling them cannot be overlooked. He was an assistant coach to the women’s national team coach Majida Nantanda a few years ago. Together with Nantanda, in 2009, they handled the under-20 national women’s team in the international qualifiers.

Right now, Kebba can be counted as an emerging football manager and administrator who has inspired many right from his family members. He is married to Margaret Kubingi, who was a prominent football referee, officiating domestically, and their children too are into refereeing and coaching at different levels including beach football.

Coach Profile - Stephen Bampigga

Stephen is making strides as a football coach and administrator especially in Makindye division, a suburb of Kampala city. He has a team playing in the first division, two tiers below the top flight league.

All that is intertwined with the ‘Skills Plus’ football initiative, to which Bampigga as chairman, is breaking boundaries to help upcoming footballers overcome the many challenges faced in the city center.

Drug abuse and lack of income to sustain a football career are some of the big challenges these young stars face. Because of the aforesaid, so many promising footballers have fallen by the way-side, which is why as Bampigga said recently during his visit to Gulu, “For young people, be it footballers to succeed in life, they need mentors to help them pursue the right path, that can bring them good tidings.”

And it is on that basis, that Bampigga comes across as an enforcer of things, ready to fight against the ills that affect football development in Uganda. They are quite many, but that will not make him waiver, he says. But much of the aura he possesses has everything to do with his school background too.

Having gone to one of the grandest schools in Uganda, St. Mary’s College Kisubi, studying with some of the best students that have turned into top citizens in the country today, Bampigga has a high sense of right and legitimacy about him and whatever he does.

Being movers and shakers is what Kisubi puts in its alumni. For example, Bampigga was in the same class as the current First son, Muhoozi Kainerugaba, who has grown through the ranks as an army officer of the Uganda People’s Defence Forces.

And it is probably with such exposure that Bampigga is now delving into mainstream national politics too. He wants to push through the concerns of his people, but most importantly, the footballer (sportsman); one who by and large remains in a state of despair because of the socio-economic structure that has overlooked him and their contemporaries.

Coach Profile - Michael Aloya

This is a lone ranger that is based in Gulu. Diligently leading the charge of grooming as many football coaches and footballers as possible. Aloya is the light and shining armour of the Premier Skills program in Northern Uganda.

Even the schools in that part of the country take him in high regard. In fact, he has had a hand in turning around the fortunes of Negri College and St. Joseph’s College, Layibi to a point that they have returned to being competitive at the Copa Coca Cola football championship after many years of non-participation.

The Copa Coca Cola pits the best 60 football schools from around the country against each other in a two week tournament. But because of the lack of proper coaching capacity in Northern Uganda, something also brought about by the LRA insurgence between 1989 and 2006. Aloya admits his home area has lagged behind.

However, Aloya points out that the insurgence left big scars on many youth that are playing football in his home area and beyond like in Kitgum District. He explained: “Majority of the young footballers and the communities in which they live in are violent. Many times football matches have been cancelled because the young people cannot take the referee’s decision.”

He added, “But now with the training I received, I am working towards mindset change to see that this trend of violence is reversed.” Apart from tackling violence, Aloya has also been involved in HIV/AIDS awareness campaigns in his home area such as Lets Change Our Lives Today for a Better Tomorrow campaign.

Michael has also worked with Persons with Disabilities in Gulu District. Over 300 children with disabilities have benefited from his initiative. Some the children especially those with hearing impairments have received scholarships to join some of the leading special needs schools in the country such as Wakiso Secondary School for the Deaf in Wakiso District and Laroo Primary School in Gulu District.

Beyond that, since being certified as a trained coach under the Premier Skills Program, he has trained 35 coaches in Gulu District, 25 in Amuru District and 20 in Nwoya District, all areas in Northern Uganda.

In addition, Aloya has raised several stars that are now playing from different leagues in the country and outside. For example Daniel Ojara plays for a Swedish football club, Odong Morish Beckham plays for Sun downs FC in the USA, Okot Denis Jemba at KCCA FC, Okello Tito formerly at Bull FC but now in Tanzania for professionalism, Lukwiya Rogers at Express FC,  and Odong Stephen Latek at SC Villa.

Besides raising football stars, Michael is involved in the rehabilitation of juvenile delinquents. He partnered Gulu Remand Home to give the children there a chance to play football. Unlike before the remand home now has a football team with disciplined children. Michael notes some of the best performers have been given scholarships to proceed with their studies.

Premier Skills Coach Training Concludes in Iganga District

In Uganda when it comes to football, very few areas can compete with the eastern region. It has provided several stars to the national team, the Uganda Cranes more than any other region. Just to mention a few Geoffrey Massa, Abbey Dhaira, Moses Oloya, Simon Masaba, Dan Wagaluka, all make it to the star line-up.

Though it’s the most popular sport adored by people from all walks of life, the sport is faced with a number of challenges for example inadequate funding, poor facilities, a huge skills gap in terms of trainers among others.

Several youth aspiring to fill the shoes of those national stars, have their dreams washed away due to lack of guidance and mentoring. This is attributed to the shortage of trained coaches in the region and the country in general.

As a result Premier Skills, an initiative between British Council and the English Premier League has stepped in to bridge the gap by training community coaches. For example, the just concluded week long Phase One coach training in Iganga District that ran from 12-16 August 2015.

Iganga District is among the 25 districts in the Eastern Region. The region is comprised of very many tribes such as Basoga, Bagwere, Japhadola, Bagisu, among others. All these tribes practice agriculture as their main economic activity.

Back to the Premier Skills coach training, the sessions were conducted by  level one coach educators Haruna Kebba who is also the national coach for the Uganda Sand Cranes (FUFA); Michael Aloya an Airtel Regional Scout Northern Uganda; Stephen Bampiiga, Chairman of Skilz Plus FC- Makindye and Willis Muwanguzi, FUFA Grassroots   Coordinator.

 41 participants were selected from across the eastern region. The turn up of women in this training was impressive. 60% of the total participants were female. “We have taken this direction because we want to engage more women in the game of football,” notes Stephen Bampiiga.

One of the activities on the closing day was a three hour demonstration of the skills the candidates had learnt during the course. Ball heading, dribbling, defending, attacking and using football as a tool to tackle social challenges. The skills were showcased to 60 children aged between11- 16 years from the Twahhed Youth Academy.

 “Since the beginning of the training we have been exposed to different styles of coaching. For example the S.M.I.L tactic, were S-speed, M- maximum participation, I- inclusion and L- learner centeredness. We have also learnt that a coach is supposed to be more of a listener than a talker,” said Bafumba Hilda a participant from Nantumba District.

A message from Peter Brown, Country Director British Council that was delivered by Maxwell Kamanyire, Programme Manager Active Citizens Uganda read, “Our purpose is to connect people in the UK to people in other countries and football is a great way to do that. We are proud of our partnership with the Premier League and delighted to be extending the Premier Skills offering in Uganda through working with local partners like FUFA.”

Lwere Sam, the Eastern Region Executive to the Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA) and also the chief guest said, “The biggest thanks you can give British Council and FUFA is to go back to your communities and use this skills to empower the youth and other members in the community to address their social challenges.” He also offered the FUFA training facility in Njeru, Jinja District to be used in future trainings at no cost.

Upon completion of the course, each participant was challenged to think about the future and how they intend to use their skills to benefit their communities. Isiko Ayubu, a former semi- professional in the Tanzanian Super League is looking to start up a team for disabled children. In 2014, Isiko was involved in an accident and lost his right arm. 

So far he has recruited eight disabled children. Isiko is also utilizing local radio stations to rally people in his area to support his cause.


A Tale of Two Coaches

Michael Aloya and Francis Okot’s love for sport gave birth to the Raiser Soccer Academy, an initiative that has taken up 200 boys and 20 girls between the ages of 10 and 16 years; with a purpose of training and developing their football talents.

Michael, prompted by his love for children, joined the Uganda Kid’s league as a volunteer coach, later; he rose to be the coordinator for Kids league in Gulu and also the greater Northern Uganda. On the other hand, Francis, driven by the urge to combat the HIV/AIDS scourge that was on the rise in Gulu, set up a mobilization campaign to create awareness about HV/AIDS.

 Michael and Francis have had a great impact on communities in Gulu. In August 2012, over 200 children participated in a sports gala at Pece Stadium that was spearheaded by Michael and organised by the Gulu Kids League and the Disabled Persons’ Union.

“Quite a number of girls also turned up for the tournament as our coaching methods are inclusive for all, it doesn’t  matter the gender, affiliations or ability,” stresses Francis.

Football drills are conducted at the academy grounds at Vienna Primary School, Goal weekly. After which the participants are taken through preventive measures against HIV/AIDS and the dangers involved.

Michael and Francis both trained Coach Educators under the British Council’s Premier Skills Programme and have jointly trained over 20 volunteer coaches, 10 in Gulu and 10 in Amuru district. Their official training sessions are often in holidays so as to engage young people to be active during their holidays.

With a grant from the Premier Skills Programme, they were able to purchase some equipment like bibs, balls and jerseys to assist them in their training sessions.

“I started two months back and the training improved my ball control. I love the training sessions,” notes Juma Hussein, a 12 year old primary 4 student at Vienna.


The relationship between the two coaches pans out in the future; nobody knows but for now their differences are the reasons they have achieved a lot in a short time.

Premier Skills Unleashing Talent from Uganda’s Cradle of Football.

Walukuba. Does the name ring a bell? Well if you weren’t aware of it you are about to discover the wealth of talent that echoes with that name.

Geoffrey Massa, Abbey Dhaira, Moses Oloya and  Simon Masaba amazingly make up the star studded roster of the Cranes, Uganda’s national football team.  They have risen from the dusty football fields of Walukuba, a small township at the end of Jinja town to super stardom.

These players are the living inspiration of Arthur Kyesimire, a Coach Educator who vowed to discover the talents in the area and get them to their ultimate dreams. Himself a football player, Arthur has been at it since 2010 when he intensified his effort to broaden on his coaching skills and football career. Arthur attended the 3-phase Coach training under British Council’s Premier Skills programme which started in 2008.

Since then Arthur has championed and spear-headed the Jinja Kids league, an event held every year in January at the Tobacco grounds in Walukuba. At these events he sought out talent, mentored 3 coaches and spotted out 8 special boys whose talent he seeks to develop.

One of the special kids Eric Dhaira; also brother to cranes goalkeeping sensation Abbey Dhiara, believes Arthur’s efforts have made a great impact in his teammates’ lives.

“He has helped and assisted my friends who couldn’t afford an education by getting them back into school,” Eric remarks.

Arthur’s grand plans of carrying out sessions on HIV/AIDS awareness, Environmental management and education, have hit a financial hurdle though. Coming from an underprivileged background means he has been limited in implementing his plans due to lack of money.

Geoffrey Massa the Cranes national team striker believes that not all is a lost cause for Arthur. He echoes the need for unity between the successful players and the upcoming ones in order to ensure victory for all.

“We have got a lot of talented players such as Abbey Dhiara, Simon Masaba, Moses Oloya and are willing to go a long way to developing the splendid talent in Walukuba,” remarks Massa.

For now, Arthur continues to assist the young talents in the area by seeking out a free education for those who cannot afford it through football scholarships for example, at Jinja Senior Secondary school.

Community work has also been a prominent fixture in Arthur’s activity as he seeks to clean up the dingy township that Walukuba is. He has organized garbage collection sessions and his doubled effort of taking boys off the street away from the danger of turning to criminal deeds makes him a force for change in the area: a change that has already started to manifest.


Premier Skills at Forefront of Environmental Preservation in Makindye

As far as using football to better the community goes, Stephen Bampigga has embraced a different path of his own. He has embarked on a campaign to create awareness on garbage disposal in Makindye Community, Kampala district- Uganda. Stephen is one of Premier Skills' beneficiaries. Premier Skills is a partnership between the British Council and the English Premier League that uses football as a tool for community development.

Through his Skillz Plus foundation, an initiative that seeks to develop and scout football talent in the area, he has enlisted schools like Top care Primary School and other parties to help support this venture.

In December 2010, he undertook his first community clean-up exercise which he continues to do annually in August and September. 

“The first attempt didn’t go well but things went on well on the second day as people joined in to clean but we would find rubbish where we had previously cleaned.” says Stephen.

Positive change in attitude towards garbage disposal is Stephen's prime target and noticeably the garbage dumping patterns in the area are changing,

“People are changing, they no longer dump rubbish in some places for example the playground used to have alot of sugar cane husks ,” notes Damba Derrick a Primary 5 pupil at Top care Primary School.

Now the community is attempting to do things the right way though they are facing a couple of challenges like lack of dustbins, gloves during the clean ups and a garbage truck to aid in transportation of the garbage.

“We now carry out the exercise effectively but still some equipment is lacking. We need a vehicle to carry the garbage,” Stephen adds.

On the other hand, Stephen has also continued with the coach training. With assistance from Crispin Mbowa a coach he inducted into the programme, they continue to develop football through their skills foundation. Stephen completed coach training under the British Council Premier Skills Programme in 2012.

“For the case of football we don’t pick kids from schools, we pick talent from the community therefore every evening we visit the playground to scout for outstanding football talents,” Chris explains. They are then taken on and given special training to develop their talent.

All in all, Stephen remains a force to reckon with in Makindye and his efforts in improving the environment have catapulted Premier Skills to the forefront of environmental conservation in the community.

St Mary’s College Kisubi wins Enterprise Challenge.

“Teams are you ready for the Enterprise Challenge?” asked Millicent Mugabi, Programme Manager Premier Skills Uganda at the Kabira Country Club yesterday, 18 February 2015 in Kampala.

Four schools: St Lawrence Academy Horizon Campus, St Mary’s College Kisubi, Kibuli Secondary School, and Wakiso Senior Secondary School for the Deaf competed for the top spot.

Peter Brown, Country Director British Council Uganda, Irene Mutumba, a social and business entrepreneur, Nassir Katuramu, a mentor and coach of East Africa’s leading social entrepreneurs and Seanice Lojede, a media practitioner, made up the panel of judges.

H.E. Alison Blackburne the British High Commissioner to Uganda graced the function along with social and business entrepreneurs, head teachers, press and parents.

Each school had a team of four or five students aged between 14-19 years. They presented a five minute pitch to the panel of judges who then assessed them on their response to the challenge and their business plan. Their task was to develop a business strategy that would attract more female fans to each of their fantasy football clubs. 

Kibuli Secondary School was first to make their presentation, a concept that included insuring their initial project investments, maximizing marketing using social media platforms, and raising funds through local partnerships.

Next was St. Lawrence Academy Horizon Campus. An all girls’ team who took turns presenting their concept of maximizing profits by creating products that appealed to women like t-shirts and sweaters. They also planned to maximize on social media by using website apps, free dinners with celebrities and carrying out market research to keep updated about the trend. 

St Mary’s College Kisubi smartly dressed in blazers was next. Their strategy included hiring consultancies to do their marketing, maximizing social media, insurance and presented a risk management plan. 

Last but not least was Wakiso School for the Deaf who took to the stage with two sign interpreters. Their strategies included offering subsidized tickets for their fantasy football games, manufacturing jerseys and offering free transportation for ladies to the stadium.

After the presentations the judges made their way to a secure area to carry out their deliberations. The schools and guests mingled and exchanged friendly chats and waited for the judges to return. Tea, coffee, and snacks helped pass the time

Finally the judges emerged with the results and without further ado Peter Brown took the stage to announce the winners. ‘’Our task as judges was certainly not an easy one. The qualities we were looking for – originality, innovation, creativity, business acumen, presentation and communication skills – are clearly present in abundance in this room, and evident in all the pitches, so, once again, I’d like to commend all the participants who have worked so hard to prepare for this day’ said Peter Brown before he handed over the results to H.E Alison Blackburne.

The audience paid close attention as she announced the results. And the winner of the Premier Skills Enterprise Challenge is St Mary’s College Kisubi! Clapping, handshakes and photo moments followed. Later in an interview with the winning team Jonathan Ossiya, the team leader of St Mary’s College Kisubi said “It was a challenging and amazing experience. The challenge has taught us the skill of networking and team work.”

First Premier Skills Phase 1 training in Uganda

Optimism was high in the greater Luweero area after the first ever Premier Skills Phase 1 training was delivered. The participants, who mainly comprised of games teachers from both primary and secondary schools, attended the training in Luweero District from 6 – 9 January, 2015. 

The course was delivered by Willis Muwanguzi, who is a Level 1, Premier Skills Coach Educator. In 2013, while attending a sports function in Luweero that involved various primary schools, he realized that there was no trained football coach. Having spoken to some teachers and the District Sports Officer, he looked forward to any opportunity that would enable him cascade his coaching skills. 

British Council Uganda partnered with Willis and other Premier Skills Coach Educators to see this proposal come to fruition.   A very happy Willis said during the closing ceremony ‘The participants have learnt something. Most were green but had a passion for football’. He was also greatly pleased with the involvement of Uganda’s governing football body FUFA (Federation of Uganda Football Associations), whom he describes as having given a wider perspective on coaching and the roles of a good coach. As a result of this training 44 (16 women and 28 men) individuals have been equipped with Basic football coaching skills. A teacher from Bemba Hill Primary School confessed to wrongly handling pupils of different ages but promised to change the approach while conducting coaching sessions as a result of Phase 1 training received. 

Mary Komugisa, the Education officer for Luweero District, couldn’t hide her excitement at the conclusion of the training especially since it was the first of its kind in Uganda. To the participants, she urged them to keep practicing with their pupils and students and not just wait for the games season. In keeping with the British Council’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion policy, she was pleased with the number of female participants and encouraged them all to inspire young girls. 

Christine Nabwire, a participant had this to say,‘I have gained more knowledge about coaching football, First Aid for the different types of injuries and how to co-operate with other coaches’. Gladys Nangendo too was very appreciative saying,‘I now know how to organise my players according to the numbers I have’ Also on hand to assist in delivering the course were other Premier Skills Coach Educators namely Haruna Kebba, Chris Mbowa and Stephen Bampigga. Chris Mbowa summed up the training by saying, ‘This was a success.  It was well- organized; communication was great, training material available amongst many other things. I believe we met the participants’ expectations’.

As the British Council team we look forward to the next training that will enable more Ugandan’s become better football coaches in their communities. 

5 day Premier Skills Womens Referee Training

“I was so excited to be part of the training camp. I hope to inspire other girls to join playing football and refereeing” That was Sarah Mukasa, one of the participants who was part of a team of 33 ladies that underwent the Premier Skills Female Referee training in Njeru, Jinja  last week. The premier skills initiative is a partnership between the British Council and Premier league. The project uses football as a tool to develop a brighter future for young people around the world.

This year’s Premier Skills camp was the first of its kind in Uganda because the focus was solely on ladies. The British Council Uganda Country Director, Peter Brown who was the chief guest said “…the course will help to promote professionalism of women’s football in Uganda and provide personal skills that can be applied to every day challenging issues in their communities”.

Sarah Garratt, International Women’s Super League referee, advised the Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA) to advertise and make the profession of refereeing more enjoyable and entertaining in order to attract more participants. She also thanked the participants for their corporation and willingness to learn.
Asuman Lubowa, Technical Director FUFA noted that there was regional tracking system in place; therefore all the 33 female participants were to be included in the FUFA and regional professional referees’ database. He further said that, the Premier Skills initiative will help football development in Uganda. The acquisition of these skills builds capacity and creates experts who have a high degree of integrity and discipline.

The training given to these female referees will help bridge the gender gap in the profession and also increase women’s involvement in the sport of football. The selection process demonstrated regional balance in the sport since the participants were recruited from the eight FUFA regions. The course co-facilitated by Sarah Garratt (FA referee) UK and FUFA referee instructor Margaret Kubingi. The ceremony was also attended by officials from FUFA and Ministry of Gender, Labor and social development.


12 coaches completed the Premier Skills Coach Educator training programme in July 2012, with four Coach Educators emerging as Level 1 Coach Educators, i.e. ready to deliver an Introduction to the Premier Skills Course and to provide mentor support to Premier Skills Coaches in Uganda.

As a project, we have been able to reach out to approximately 105 youth in the armed forces including seven coaches and three referees. – Chris Mbowa, a Level 1 Coach Educator.

Premier League Enterprise Challenge Workshop - October 2014

Friday 3 0ctober 2014 was the closing day of a week-long Premier League Enterprise workshop  at Kibuli Secondary School. Participants were selected from different countries like; Sudan, Botswana, Ethiopia and Uganda. Present at the function was Peter Brown British Council Director, representatives from partner schools, among other people.

During the workshop, participants were trained by Premier League tutors; Sophie Hukin, Sonola Olamidde  and Christopher Hooker to develop their entrepreneurial skills using sports as a study tool.

The workshop featured an enterprise challenge that involved developing business models for marketing and growing female fan bases of each group’s fantasy team. These models were later presented to a panel of judges; Peter Brown, Rose Izizinga, Head Teacher Kintate Hill School, and Debbie Serwadda, Regional Director ICON Enterprise Foundation.

The Elite team tutored by Botswana emerged as winners earning themselves Sunderland FC jerseys and Premier League items, among other things. Peter Brown urged the participants to use the skills to transform their communities and promote equal opportunities in football.

“The International Enterprise Challenge is not all about football but harnessing the skills that students, teachers, tutors have” said Sophie Hukin. She added that entrepreneurship is all around us and it doesn’t stop.  For the first time the Enterprise Challenge was held at an international level and Uganda was among the first beneficiaries of the program.

The programme is designed to teach young people principles of business and self-employment with the aim of engaging, inspiring, and unlocking potential. It’s a partnership between the British Council and the Premier League

See also