A Football Garden for Sierra Leone – documentary portrays ARI graduate

You can now watch the documentary A Football Garden for Sierra Leone on our official YouTube channel!

This documentary portrays Pastor Mambud Samai and his organization, the Single Leg Amputee Sports Association (SLASA). Mambud is the association’s program coordinator and a 2018 graduate of the Rural Leaders Training Program at the Asian Rural Institute.

“In Sierra Leone, many youths live with amputations in the wake of the civil war,” said Mambud at the beginning of his training at ARI. “Using the sport of soccer, I work to empower these young adults and give them hope. I also offer classes on computers, financing, agri-science, nutrition, and food security.”

Following his training, Mambud started expanding agricultural activities with the amputees in Freetown. The documentary shows some of the first steps they take to make their vision of a garden and soccer field possible.

This film was created by German team Dr. Donata Elschenbroich and Dr. Otto Schweitzer, documentary filmmakers with over thirty years of expertise in educational films from a cross-cultural perspective. Donata has been volunteering regularly at ARI since 2011. The film was developed in 2019 as a joint venture between Donata and ARI’s Graduate Outreach Coordinator Steven Cutting, working together on the concept and research as they visited various places in Sierra Leone.

After filming, the LUSH Foundation in the UK further funded constructions on the football field, and SLASA continued planting, harvesting, and receiving visiting schoolchildren. European supporters have pledged to provide new prostheses, training, medical supplies, and buildings, helping SLASA to gain claim ownership of the land. SLASA is also supported by the United Church of Canada, a supporter of ARI.