Justus Mirembe – ACSCA Immediate Past President’s Report:
December 1, 2016.
Community service is one of the most rewarding things that an individual can do. It’s also meant for people who put others before themselves and are willing to make personal sacrifices to make a difference. Indeed it’s where ordinary people do extraordinary things.
During my administration as President of the African Canadian Soccer and Cultural Association (ACSCA), a team of dedicated volunteers under my leadership have gone far and beyond their normal lives to make a difference in our community.
Below are a few highlighted achievements of my Presidency;
2016 – ACSCA successfully became an “Associate Member of the BC Soccer Association” which opened up opportunities for our Club “Africa United FC” which comprises of youth and adult soccer teams, Boys and Girls, Men and Women, to compete in all major soccer tournaments across Canada without any limitations.
2014 – ACSCA started the “Africa United Spring-Summer Youth Soccer Program” which allows kids from ages of 4 to 18 to play soccer during Spring and Summer at all levels, from house leagues to select competitive tournaments and leagues. In just 2 years of its implementation, the program now boasts of a membership of over 300 kids from various African Countries such as Ethiopia, Uganda, Sudan, South Sudan, Ghana, Nigeria, Liberia, Congo, Canada, etc. With the famous out-of-town field trip to the Interior (Penticton, Kelowna, Kamloops) during the Canada Day Long Weekend, this program is unique in nature and is guaranteed to give the kids in our community open opportunities to have fun and enjoy playing soccer in a safe environment.
2011 – ACSCA started a formal indoor “African Awards Dinner Gala” which the Association formally recognizes and rewards community members who have gone far and beyond their normal lives in making a difference in our community as well as recognizes outstanding soccer players in various age groups that have demonstrated excellency in their ability to play soccer while maintaining discipline during these competitive games and tournaments. At this Dinner Gala, various African cultural troupes such as the Liberia Cultural Group, Ethiopian Youth Cultural Group, Simba Dance Group of Congo, and the Acholi Dance Group of Uganda have had an avenue to showcase their cultural dances to attendees of this annual event.
2011 – ACSCA successfully registered “Africa United FC” Men’s Open age team in the Multicultural Soccer League which has helped with the branding and outreach approach of community promotion during invitational soccer tournaments played across the lower mainland.
2010 – ACSCA, under my leadership created the now famous “Africa United FC” Men’s Open team which paved a way for other Africa United FC teams in various age groups to form. It was under this African spirit that ACSCA successfully registered and qualified “Team Africa” in the Richmond Nations Cup Tournament, a Western Canada Premier Soccer Tournament that brings all represented nations once every year to compete and showcase their dominance on the soccer field. Team Africa twice made it to the Semi-Finals of this prestigious tournament which brings in soccer loving nations such as England, Germany, India, Fiji, Canada, to mention but a few. As of 2016, Team Africa is now represented in various competitive tiers that include the Men’s Open, Women’s Open, Men’s Over 30 and Men’s Over 38. This tournament has allowed ACSCA to showcase and contribute to the diversity and multiculturalism of British Columbia through soccer.
From a financial side of things, from 2010 to 2016, ACSCA, under my leadership has managed to recruit and retain various sponsors and donors that include; Western Union Canada, Heineken Canada, the City of Burnaby and Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities. These amazing donors have enabled ACSCA to continue on with the important role of undertaking to host community events that preserve the African Culture in British Columbia and Canada at large. Prior to 2010, ACSCA ran one annual community event; the African Soccer Tournament which only catered for one gender demographic. Fast-forward to 2016, ACSCA now runs 5 major annual community programs that cater for both male and female, adult and youth community members with a significant annual budget.
With these few highlighted achievements, I feel proud to have served as President of the largest Not-For Profit African Community Association in British Columbia and I will continue to do so in an advisory role moving forward. I have all the confidence in the newly elected team and I have no doubt in my mind that they will do an amazing job in the continuing effort of steering ACSCA in the right direction. Let’s rally behind the new team and give them every support to succeed.
Lastly, I want to thank my family and everyone that supported in delivering these tangible results for the African Community in BC and beyond. I am forever grateful for the opportunity to serve my community and help to contribute to the preservation of the African Culture and the multicultural diversity that our Province boasts.
United We Stand, Together We Progress!!
Justus Mirembe – Immediate Past President
African Canadian Soccer and Cultural Association (ACSCA)