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Open Call for the Nonprofit World 2021: selected NGOFútbol Más
Baba Yao

A large garbage dump turned into a social football field.

Austin Ajowi, also know as “Baba Yao”, which means “the father of all”, is a Kenyan Football coach from Mathare, one of the biggest slums in Nairobi. When his goalkeeper career came to an early end afer a knee injury, he start to clearing mountains of rubbish in a dumping site on his community. Every night people from neghbouring communities would come and drop their rubbish and Austin would have to start all over again. But he didn’t give up and slowly conquered centimeter by centimeter, meter by meter, each bringing him closer to his goal: build a community playing field for the children of his community, today called Austin Grounds.

Austin became a known coach to develop good female football players, pushing for gender equality, coming to be champion of Kenya. He also began to include more children, to work with the disabled, to help alcoholics, homeless, and anyone who needs help on his neighborhood. He is also co-founder of two based schools in Mathare, Valley View Academy and Destiny Junior Education Centre, with 700 and 300 students respectively.

The neighborhood is strongly affected by the business of an illegal locally-brewed alcoholic beverage called Chang’aa, that is often adulterated with highly toxic chemicals which are added to the brew to make it stronger. Very popular in Kenyan slums, it is one of the leading causes of death in the area. It is produced along the banks of the rivers.

Austin Ajowi keeps working in collaboration with Futbol Más carrying out social football programs, and promoting and developing resilience in children and adults living in disadvantaged communities. Every day he ties his dreadlocks and goes out into the street. Dozens of children hang around his neck. The same scene every day. At 44, Austin Ajowi is still doing what he loves and is passionate about. Something that revolutionised a village, that could inspire a movie script. These children are part of his family and he sees himself reflected in them. People love him and this is the reason why everyone wants to wake up and go to the place that makes them happy, to the place that teaches them values and life skills. That’s why everyone calls him Baba Yao, “the father of all”. That’s why everyone wants to be in that magical place. Everyone wants to play on Austin’s playing field.

Fútbol Más is an NGO that was born in Chile in 2008, with the aim of promoting well-being and happiness in children and communities that live in contexts of social vulnerability. Through social sports sessions, the foundation uses the Green Card as a bonding tool, to positively reinforce 5 fundamental values in children. Respect, joy, responsibility, creativity and teamwork are part of each intervention and through games and sports, Fútbol Más is inserted in the heart of the neighborhoods, in 10 countries of the world distributed between Africa, Europe and Latin America. The photographic work presented in this call is about Fútbol Más Kenya.

futbolmas.org

Sebastian Gil Miranda is a documentary photographer, filmmaker and visual artist whose stories focus on humanitarian, social and environment issues.

He was born in Paris, France, and grew up in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He holds a degree in Psychology at the University of Buenos Aires. He was a university professor in the subjects of research, communication and human rights at the University of Buenos Aires and at the University of Palermo.

Sebastian has been awarded several prizes and honors: 1º prize at 2015 Sony World Photography Award with its series “Shoot Ball, Not Gun”; 1º prize at “People’s Choice Prize” at Photoville 2014 in New York, with its series “Children Playing on the Street of Cuba”; “Performance Award” in the Humanity Photo Award 2015 and “Nomination Award” in the Humanity Photo Award 2017, organized by the China Folklore Photographic Association and UNESCO; Honor Mention in POY Latam 2019, in short films, with his work “Ballet against Bullet”; FotoEvidence Book Award – World Press Photo 2021, winner with the collective Covid Latam, among others.

His work was published in international news outlets like the BBC, The Guardian, CNN, National Geographic, New York Times, The Atlantic, Vice News, Le Nouvel Observateur, Geo, British Journal of Photography, Huffington Post, Photo, Media Part, Marie Claire, O Globo, ​Gramma, among others.

sebastiangilmiranda.com​

Fútbol Más is an NGO that was born in Chile in 2008, with the aim of promoting well-being and happiness in children and communities that live in contexts of social vulnerability. Through social sports sessions, the foundation uses the Green Card as a bonding tool, to positively reinforce 5 fundamental values in children. Respect, joy, responsibility, creativity and teamwork are part of each intervention and through games and sports, Fútbol Más is inserted in the heart of the neighborhoods, in 10 countries of the world distributed between Africa, Europe and Latin America. The photographic work presented in this call is about Fútbol Más Kenya.

futbolmas.org

Sebastian Gil Miranda is a documentary photographer, filmmaker and visual artist whose stories focus on humanitarian, social and environment issues.

He was born in Paris, France, and grew up in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He holds a degree in Psychology at the University of Buenos Aires. He was a university professor in the subjects of research, communication and human rights at the University of Buenos Aires and at the University of Palermo.

Sebastian has been awarded several prizes and honors: 1º prize at 2015 Sony World Photography Award with its series “Shoot Ball, Not Gun”; 1º prize at “People’s Choice Prize” at Photoville 2014 in New York, with its series “Children Playing on the Street of Cuba”; “Performance Award” in the Humanity Photo Award 2015 and “Nomination Award” in the Humanity Photo Award 2017, organized by the China Folklore Photographic Association and UNESCO; Honor Mention in POY Latam 2019, in short films, with his work “Ballet against Bullet”; FotoEvidence Book Award – World Press Photo 2021, winner with the collective Covid Latam, among others.

His work was published in international news outlets like the BBC, The Guardian, CNN, National Geographic, New York Times, The Atlantic, Vice News, Le Nouvel Observateur, Geo, British Journal of Photography, Huffington Post, Photo, Media Part, Marie Claire, O Globo, ​Gramma, among others.

sebastiangilmiranda.com​

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Exhibitions 2021