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Friday 30th of September 2022

Nairobi, Kenya

Sifucha Football Academy (SIFA) Incredible Football Journey Is Inspiring The Next Generation In Busia County

The Inspiring Journey Of Sifucha Football Club In this age of instant rewards and gratification, it is often too easy for youngsters to give up on their footballing dreams at the first sign of trouble that a different case at the club, It’s something that should inspire a lot of young players that are out there that don’t have the attributes of those who have been playing at the highest level since they were 18.

The Idea

Behind SIFA was a small group of boys who we came across by the roadside earl 2018 playing with a ball they had skillfully crafted by wrapping pieces of nylon papers into rags and fastening the rags into a round shape using pieces of manila strings on our walk around our village, Sifucha.

The game was so fun that we became spectators without knowing it. We were amazed by the moves and dribbles by most of the junior players despite them being barefooted and with neither a trainer nor a playground.
This was however shortly before the government imposed a ban on the use of nylon papers in the country. The ban meant that the boys wouldn’t be able to make a new ball since the other was already torn and the materials that would make a new one were now illegal.

A few days later we had a case of some of the boys plucking young pumpkins and just kicking them around. The entire village was mad at these crop ‘destroyers’.
When I talked to the boy he admitted it and said it was because they did not have a ball to play with. The boy asked me if I could get them a cheap plastic ball to play with since it was fun.
A Project
I did not give the kid a response but when he kept nagging and almost going on his knees I was moved but there was nothing I could do as such because, for one, the plastic ball was not as ‘cheap’ as it sounded and two, it was fragile enough to burst after a few kicks and they would be at my back again for new balls. When the kid was not going away I promised him to think about it.
But amazingly the next day he was at my doorstep together with his mates inquiring of my thoughts. They also wanted me to be their coach if I bought them the ball.
The determination of these kids really amazed me and I thought if we had such a portion of kids approach me for the ball then there must be some more that were afraid to speak up or just had no channels to communicate. I contacted my sons and we organized for the ball.
On that day it was fun again. But as I had known before, our fragile plastic ball was disappointing.
Once again we needed a new ball, though it could be played for the next about two games. Each day more kids kept coming and in no time we had a team of about 100 players of both genders which we divided into four teams under 10, under 14, under 16, and under 18. The field became smaller and more dangerous since it was by the roadside being used by motorists, so we needed a new and bigger playground.
Due to the increasing number of youngsters one ball would not be enough, more balls would be of help, Once again I was onto my sons for these,

That was when the SIFA project was born, We took into account the boots, training kits, academy management and trainers, referees, balls, and a playground. Together with friends, we approached the Busibi primary and secondary schools management for playgrounds which they accepted but only if students were out of school.

This budget cannot be afforded by my family and that is why we are on the run looking for sponsors and donors like you.

Any donations towards the achievement of any of the above would be highly appreciated from financial to material support. Any support that is geared to growing these young talents is highly welcome.

The Impact

When the SIFA idea was being crafted we thought it would only be of help to the six boys that we’re championing for the balls, little did we know that it would be a big project with a greater impact than we impacted.

The SIFA project is now nurturing the talents of about 100 footballers though we intend a bigger goal and diversify the sports to beyond football the kids are happy with the move and the society and the leadership is in support since the society allow the kids to the ground and the leadership occasionally organize for tournaments which we’ve been winning anyway. We also realized that we had individuals who are trained coaches and referees but were at home and had no platform to practice their skills.

At least they now have the ground to practice their profession. Since coaches are enrolled in the training of the juniors and referees authorize the games. Most importantly we have helped recognize great leadership skills from some of the local individuals who help us in the management of the academy. The juniors can also organize themselves and have training among themselves with minimal or no supervision, a move we are encouraging.

Our main aim is to create a safe space that provides the youths with valuable tools to make a difference in their own lives. “Giving children and young people a sporting chance”

Any support that is geared toward growing these young talents is highly welcome.
M-Pesa Paybill: 891300
Account Number: 34303

Email: sifuchafootballacademy@gmail.com

Charles Alochi
+254733984337
Founder & Club Patron
Sifucha Football Academy (SIFA) Busia County

Sifucha Social Media Platforms
Sifucha Team Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/sifuchafootball

Content courtesy of Sifucha Football Academy & NFH Digital Team 

Explore African Culture Right in Metro Detroit

Metro Detroit is home to a growing community of Africans from countries all across the continent. Though not as visible as Polish culture in Hamtramck or Arab influences in Dearborn, African cultures abound in metro Detroit, making it easy to sample the richness of the continent right here at home.

Seydi Sarr, a Senegal native and executive director of the African Bureau of Immigration & Social Affairs (ABISA) in Detroit, says the city attracts a steady flow of African immigrants from larger metropolitan areas such as New York and Washington, D.C., who come here to settle down, raise families, and establish businesses. As of 2000, there were nearly 17,000 African-born people in Michigan. By 2016 that number had risen nearly 63 percent to a little over 27,000, according to the U.S. Census.

More than half of the state’s African-born population at that time lived in the Detroit-Warren-Dearborn area. They represent a diverse mixture of people who hail from Senegal, Guinea, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda, Togo, Cameroon, the Ivory Coast, and elsewhere, says Zaini Itito, a Togo native who serves as shelter and client services manager at the nonprofit Freedom House Detroit, a temporary home for asylum seekers.

“It’s definitely diverse because you have Senegalese, you have Gambian, you have the Ivory Coast, you have Benin, you have Togo, you have Mali, you have Nigeria, you have Uganda … you have Burundi in here. It’s very, very diverse,” Sarr says of African influences in the region.

There are plenty of ways to experience the diversity of African culture right here in metro Detroit if you know where to look.

Don’t Miss 

A great place to start is with a trip to Dabls Mbad African Bead Museum. Museum owner, curator, and visual storyteller Olayami Dabls began collecting African beads in the ’80s. He opened his museum in 2002 on an entire city block in Detroit with the goal of connecting the local community to African history and material culture, free from the constructs of European museums. The walls of the bead gallery and shop are covered from ceiling to floor in hand-carved bone, glass, brass, and ceramic beads from all around the continent. The campus also includes 18 outdoor mosaic and mural installations, including the “N’kisi House” and the “African Language Wall,” which features 25 of the continent’s languages painted in multiple colors.

The African World Festival is a highly anticipated annual event in Detroit. During a three-day weekend each August, the festival brings live music and dance performances, art, clothing, more than 200 authentic African and Caribbean food vendors, and more to crowds that surpass 125,000 in non-pandemic years. The event has been held at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History for the past decade, but it’s scheduled to return to its original home base, Hart Plaza, from Aug. 22 to 24 this year.

At the Detroit Institute of Arts, local historian Jamon Jordan guides guests through the museum’s ancient Egyptian and African exhibits as part of the Royal African Tour. ABISA’s Sarr, meanwhile, teaches West African dance classes at the N’Namdi Center for Contemporary Art’s Movement Center.

The Real Deal

Several shops with authentic African apparel and accessories line the Livernois Avenue of Fashion in Detroit. Love Travels. Imports. offers handcrafted artisan goods created by makers in South Africa, Guatemala, Peru, and Haiti, including apparel, accessories, textiles, and body products. The shop is a culmination of owner Yvette Jenkins’ travels to those places. Nearby Akoma is an art gallery, shop, and co-op space for local women artists and makers, featuring African textiles including indigo-dyed cotton and hand-dyed mud cloth from Mali. Other notable shops on the avenue include African Fabrics & Fashion and Prisca’s African Fashion for Less.

Sarr recommends a visit to Detroit’s Djenne Beads and Art, owned by Mali native Mahamadou Sumareh, for African beads, perfumes, shea butter, and clothing. Also worth a visit is Sun’s Crystal and Bead Supply, which stocks a selection of brass, carnelian, coconut heishi beads, and more. Zarkpa’s, owned by Liberia native Tracy Garley, offers vibrant tops, dashikis, skirts, dresses, masks, and headwraps handmade with
fabrics from Ghana, Nigeria, and Liberia.

At African Fashions by Classic Expressions in Oak Park, Nigeria native and designer Yemisi Bamisaye designs ready-to-wear garments and custom pieces with fabrics from Nigeria, Angola, Ghana, and Cote d’Ivoire. Stereos International Boutique in Detroit is internationally known for its geles, a traditional Nigerian head wrap.

For more products with African roots, check out Diop, a “diaspora-inspired streetwear” brand founded by first-generation American Mapate Diop. The brand’s vibrant apparel and accessories are made of Ankara fabric, a material that Diop’s mother brought home after visiting her native Nigeria that inspired Diop to start his business. And Chinyone Akunne’s beauty brand Ilera Apothecary features collections of plant-based, ethically sourced cleansers, moisturizers, and body butter influenced by Akunne’s Nigerian roots.

Detroit’s west side is also home to many grocers Darou Salam African MarketAfrican Village MarketFamily African Market, and United African Market among them that sell African foods, herbs, organic products, oils, butter, cosmetics, and similar products.

Tastes

Authentic African fare is plentiful in metro Detroit. At Maty’s African Cuisine, chef Amady Guere whips up Senegalese dishes such as chicken yassa; deep-fried fataya pastries; and maafe, a West African stew. Located in Detroit’s Old Redford neighborhood, the restaurant is the first of its kind in the city. KG’s African American Grill in Garden City also serves traditional Senegalese fare, including various takes on the national dish, thiéboudienne, along with burgers, chicken sandwiches, and other American classics.

Afro-Caribbean eatery YumVillage, founded by chef Godwin Ihentuge, specializes in Hot Bowls filled with flavorful proteins, rice, and veggies including mango curry chicken, guava Tahini chicken, lemon pepper jerk chicken, jollof, coconut or turmeric rice, and spicy plantains. Not far from YumVillage in Detroit’s New Center neighborhood is Baobab Fare, a highly anticipated East African restaurant founded by the husband-wife duo and Burundi natives Nadia Nijimbere and Hamissi Mamba. This, the area’s newest African dining spot, opened in mid-February.

Kola Restaurant & Ultra Lounge in Farmington Hills offers Afro-Caribbean eats paired with live Afrobeat, reggae, and jazz music performances as well as comedy and dance shows. The Blue Nile in Ferndale and Ann Arbor and Taste of Ethiopia in Southfield offer Ethiopian meat and vegetarian dishes. Other spots to check out include Detroit’s Kalahari African Cuisine and the Fork in Nigeria food truck, which offers flavorful dishes rooted in chef-owner Prej Iroebgu’s native Nigeria.

Did You Know?

Afrobeat is a genre that combines elements of West African music such as Nigerian fuji music, traditional Yoruba music, and Ghanaian highlife with American jazz and funk. The Odu Afrobeat Orchestra, a Detroit-based, 15-piece ensemble, is one notable example of local Afrobeat talent.

A legendary Afrobeat performance was recorded live at the Fox Theatre in 1986. The late Fela Kuti a Nigerian multi-instrumentalist and activist regarded as the pioneer of Afrobeat performed there less than a year after he was released from his 20-month imprisonment in Nigeria. The four-song set lasted nearly two and a half hours and was released as the album Live in D. 

Content courtesy of Hour Detriot & Nairobi fashion hub 

Can Made in Africa Transform the Continent’s Leather Industry to the Next Level?

Luxury labels in the West use the best of Africa’s leather. Now, African companies and designers want to build their own brands.

Winston Leather, a Nigerian leather brand, celebrated the biggest sales in its 30 years in business last June. The boost was thanks to a tweet in March from fashion historian Shelby Christie highlighting how its tannery, based in Kano, Nigeria, supplies leather to luxury fashion houses such as Louis Vuitton and Ralph Lauren.

The tweet resurfaced in June and prompted a flood of orders as the fashion industry sought new sourcing opportunities that supported Black businesses. And the single tweet put right some misconceptions about the quality of African leather goods.

“It was like a stamp of approval,” says Winston Udeagha of Winston Leather, which is a subsidiary of Udeagha’s wonderfully titled parent company, God’s Little Tannery. “What people don’t know is that much of the leather used around the world actually originates in Africa,” he notes.

“For them, if luxury fashion houses were using our leather in their finished goods then they could buy purses and shoes from us and trust our quality.” Udeagha has been in the leather manufacturing business for decades, but his company only decided to produce its own brand leather accessories in 2018 when he realized the potential of a growing market of fashion consumers within and outside Africa who were keen to buy African.

For a long time, African leather has remained unappreciated by the consumer despite a shift in consumer consciousness and pressure for greater transparency in every aspect of the fashion business. EU laws stipulate that the country of origin of finished goods is the country where the final production process occurs.

This has enabled luxury fashion houses that source raw leather from Africa, and even begin the production process there, to tag their products as, for example, Made in Italy. This practice has helped European manufacturers to avoid using a Made in Africa tag, a process that has kept Made in Africa leather goods under the radar and struggling to build an image for quality and excellence, in Africa itself as much as abroad.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CKhK7HnHqPf/?utm_source=ig_embed

Underfunded but determined, African designers are leaning on Africa’s vast resources and capacity for sustainable fashion to change the perception of African leather and promote it to a broader market. While leather is losing ground with many sustainability-focused designers around the world, African-based production offers a more palatable solution.

Problems like animal cruelty, wastewater and use of harsh chemicals in the tanning process are alleviated by under farming, reduced consumption practices that encourage reuse, and fairer livestock farming with provision of meat as primary focus, and then by abattoirs that help reduce shipping emissions.

Initiatives like the Green Tanning Initiative and metal-free leather in Ethiopia and other East African countries are also working to educate tanners on less toxic methods of tanning and dyeing leather and push for more environmentally friendly policies in Africa’s leather production.

Sending African leather abroad

The best quality African leather has tended to go to export markets. In response, some of the most interesting African leather goods companies have learned to adapt and use local material resources to the full.

“We focused on what we could do better,” says Nardos Tamirat, co-founder of Ethiopia-based Tibeb Leather Works. “We knew we were in a different market and our value proposition was different. For us, that is our leather and traditional Ethiopian designs.”

The company uses leather that would otherwise be discarded as flawed by many premium houses to create leather purses and other accessories. By keeping the leather as natural as possible with its flawed skin, Tamirat believes Tibeb stays true to its Ethiopian origins.

Tamirat’s strategy is shared by Mark Stephenson, managing director of Sandstorm Kenya. “African leather designers and manufacturers don’t have the resources to efficiently mass produce like, say, China can. The technology isn’t there yet in Africa. And so for Sandstorm, the question is how can we use technology to create more jobs for artisans and tanners and optimize value within Africa using slow fashion,” he says.

Basic infrastructure, such as the best machinery for drying, is lacking in parts of Africa. Much of the leather produced in Africa is exported out of the continent to be finished and then imported back as finished goods. The cumulative effect of this is to leave the industry in a state of underdevelopment.

Frustrations abound. “When I started my business, I researched about African leather because I wanted my shoes to celebrate African artisanship as much as possible,” says Nigerian designer, Tina A, founder of Kkerelé.

“I found that the leather sold in Mushin market, where most accessory designers in Lagos are based, is imported from Europe. This didn’t make sense to me considering the tanneries we have in Africa and our cattle farming.”

A problem for African designers is that tanneries tailor their business policies to fit the demands of their largest buyers, which are often Western businesses. This leads to high minimum order quantities, shutting out African designers with their much smaller orders.

Tamirat explains that in its first few years of business, Tibeb relied on scraps from the tanneries because the company couldn’t afford to buy in bulk in the way that Ethiopian tanners preferred.

Promoting African Leather

African designers have the potential to play a central role in developing a new image of quality for Made in Africa. Tibeb Leather Works is partnering with businesses in Ethiopia to create educational materials that help young designers understand Ethiopia’s design history and lean into designing using materials sourced in Africa and sourced sustainably.

Designers like Nigeria’s Femi Olayebi of Femi Handbags are also creating initiatives, such as Lagos Leather Fair, to connect tanners to designers and buying groups where small designers can band together and buy in bulk from tanneries with high minimum order quantities.

Meanwhile, Nigeria’s Winston Leather has already responded to the needs of smaller designers by evolving a business model enabling designers to buy as little as 10 square feet of leather hide rather than the minimum quantity of 20,000 square feet previously required.

The potential is there, but plenty of work remains to be done. “To grow Africa’s leather industry, tanners and manufacturers cannot focus solely on getting Western designers and luxury houses to use their leather,” says Stephenson of Sandstorm Kenya, who has sat on Kenya’s Leather Development Council. “They must also make themselves accessible to African designers and brands who can tell and celebrate an authentic story of African artisanship from cattle, sheep and goat origins to the finished leather goods.”

Written by Adedoyin Adeniji

Content courtesy of Vogue Business & Nairobi fashion hub

MADE IN AFRICA S/S 2020, CLOTHES, CULTURE, CONNECTION AFRICAN FUSION FASHION BOWS AT NYFW

For the first time, during NYFW, MADE IN AFRICA 2020, will present premiere runway presentations from two, contemporary African designers, at Pier 59 Studios on September 5th – @ 6PM 2019.
Each grouping spotlights the African connection between clothing, culture, tradition, aesthetics, et al, as a means of both beautification and body adornment.

Described as the “embodiment of creativity and expression with deeper cultural & spiritual meaning; designs reflect the artisanal artistry gleaned from deep African ancestral spiritual roots.”

“Truly great artistry is not achieved through knowledge or mastery alone, but, by divine inspiration from those who have come before. Their spirit lives through the hands, lives and souls of our modern African ateliers”, Creative Director, Paul Leisegang

For Laduma Ngxokolo, founder/designer, MAXHOSA AFRICA, the SiziiKumnkani NeeKumnkanikazi (“We Are Kings and Queens”) grouping, portrays the regal majesty of Africans and Africa; ‘The Cradle of Mankind’. “My collection showcases the cultural roots and traditions of Africa. My desire is to have my work restore dignity to the continent, so that each garment may reflect a modern, current aesthetic, yet, with an ancient philosophy behind my brand, set in our rich African heritage with its observance of ceremony.”

 Jan Malan and Greg Meyer – Photo credit – Johan Venter

“Basking in the Osun River”, Eliana Murargy’s muse experiences a re-birth in the sweet waters of West Africa, channelling her protective deity, paying homage to the Aje, honoring the woman who yields cosmic powers and her force of creation and sustainer of life. Celebrating the timeless signature of the studio, in tandem with the gentle nature of female embodiment, healing, empowerment, the delicate, day to evening collection balances fine tailoring and refined fit via flowing shapes, detailed silhouettes; soft shadings of rosé, beige, wide array of blues, vivid sparkles,
delicate silks, touches of silvery textures; pink accents in tandem with stark white and black.

Leisegang notes: “MADE IN AFRICA is an invitation to sense and experience the culturally appropriate, magical experience of African fashion; the spirit, craft, history and ceremony of these pieces, which have been passed along through the generations. We want everyone to experience how each designer blends modern African fashion and new technologies with ancient cultural tradition across the collections shown on the runway.

For Producer, Jan Malan, “the glorious, complex, wonderful body is exceptionally adaptable, inherently portable, and simultaneously personal and public. We are using the body as the mobile vehicle; unique canvas, on which to project forms that pass between cultures and communities.

Content courtesy of Bonnie Bien // L A  P R E S S E  PR – New York // +212 567-8900, (Africa) Leon Haasbroek // LJHPR – Johannesburg // +27 711 934181 & Nairobi fashion hub

Women Entrepreneurs Who Influence Beauty Industry In Africa 

Africa  has come of age where we appreciate our own beauty products, In the world of beauty and wellness, there is a huge interest right now in products and services that celebrate the essence of Africa’s unique natural resources and ingredients, whilst at the same time harnessing traditional skills and up-to-the-minute knowledge of leading women innovators in the industry. These game-changers are changing the face of the beauty and wellness industry in Africa, and creating fabulous new, proudly African products and brands in the process that the world wants to buy and use. Some of the names and brands are well-known – others are new to the scene – but all of them are capturing the imaginations of consumers across the continent, and indeed the world below are some of 30 Women Entrepreneurs Changing the Face of the Beauty and Wellness Industry in Africa.

  1. Suzie Wokabi – Founder of Suzie Beauty Ltd – Kenya
  2. Charlyn Kentaro – The Good Hair Collective – Uganda
  3. Upendo Shuma​​​​​​​ – Founder Lavie Makeup Studio
    ​​​​​​​ – Tanzania 
  4. Linda Gieskes Mwamba – Suki Suki Naturals – South Africa
  5. Tara Fela-Durotoye – Founder of House of Tara – Nigeria
  6. Terryanne Chebet – Founder of Keyara Organics – Kenya
  7. Shereen Makhanye – Founder of Nubian Nature (Pty) Ltd – South Africa
  8. Tamarind Nott – Founder of Mbiri Natural Skincare – Namibia
  9. Getty Choenyana – Founder of Oamobu Naturals – South Africa
  10. Korkor Kugblenu – Founder of The Body Butter Company – Ghana
  11. Kerryne Krause Neufeldt – Founder of Eye Slices – South Africa
  12. Leila Janah – Founder and CEO of LXMI​​​​​​​ –Uganda
  13. Thokozile Mangwiro – Founder of Nyla Naturals – South Africa
  14. Yolanda Methvin – Founder of LithaFlora – South Africa
  15. Christine Buchanan and Louiza Rademan – Founders of Oh Lief – South Africa
  16. Eunice Cofie – Founder of Nuekie – United States
  17. Jesslynn Schlam – Founder of Lulu & Marula – South Africa
  18. Zeze Oriaikhi Sao – Founder of Malee Natural Science – South Africa
  19. Tanya du Bois – Founder of Naturals Beauty – South Africa
  20. Zikhona Tefu – Founder of O’live – South Africa
  21. Sarah Taylor – Bee Balmy – South Africa
  22. Bukky George – HealthPlus Limited and CasaBella International – Nigeria
  23. Florence Adepoju – MDMFlow – Nigeria/Britain
  24. Leslie Okoye – Cookie Skin – Nigeria
  25. Ego Iwegbu-Daley – Miss Salon London – South Africa
  26. Ngozi Opara – Heat Free Hair – Nigeria
  27. Rahama Wright – Shea Yeleen – Ghana/US
  28. Joycee Awojoodu – Oriki Group – Nigeria
  29. Banke Meshida-Lawal – BM Pro – Nigeria
  30. Leonette Galliano – Wema Bodycare – South Africa

 

Content Courtesy Of Lionesses Of Africa  

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