Ubabalo means “grace” in Xhosa, one of the official languages of South Africa, where our ministry began. Through sports, we set out to address the challenge of fatherlessness in Africa and over time (more than a decade), the ministry has spread worldwide. Our trained coaches use sports as a small-scale version of life to introduce life values during regular coaching sessions on the sports field. This enables the coach to be a role model, father figure, and mentor in the player’s life. The coach includes teachable moments during the sport training sessions to impact the players’ in all areas of their lives, thus becoming a ‘Whole Life Coach’.
Once an emerging force for democracy in West Africa, Mali has struggled in recent years to maintain governmental stability. A rebellion in 2012, followed by military intervention in the north, and regular uprisings by rebel and extremist groups throughout the country have left the nation of about 19 million people vulnerable. Conflict in Mali continues as frequent and severe droughts have added to the country’s challenges. COVID-19 has reached all areas of Mali, straining the nation’s poor healthcare system and worsening the economy.
This crisis has caused the people of Mali to seek moral men and women to serve as leaders in different areas of the government and their local communities.
Children must be taught healthy values and principles through words and the behavior of adults so that they can grow and develop them in their lives. The family no longer fulfills this role as many parents (especially fathers) are unable to be good role models for their children. As many Malian kids and teenagers are drawn to sports, the Whole Life Coach can serve the role of father-figure, demonstrating life skills and Bible-based values on and off the field.
We plan to train young Christians with a talent for football to become Whole Life Coaches for children through football academies. These academies will allow the Whole Life Coaches to disciple the kids and connect them with Jesus. The objective is to train and follow up with 10 Whole Life Coaches who will work on a weekly basis with 250 children.
Image Copyright: Ubabalo
Whole Life Coaching
Image Copyright: Ubabalo
Coach Daniel Fomba
“I have really liked the idea and concept of the Whole Life Coaching Program. As a football player and young Christian, it was often difficult for me to connect football and faith. Now I can help my community’s kids to improve their football techniques and use this framework to disciple them.”
HEALTH / HYGIENE
FAMILY / COMMUNITY CARE
EDUCATION / TRAINING
INFORMATION / RESEARCH
EQUIPMENT / TOOLS
RENOVATION / MAINTENANCE
* Highlighted budget icons apply to this grant
Transportation for trainers and delegates from Mopti and Kolikoro
Food for participants and trainers during 5-day training
Accommodations for participants and trainers for 5 nights