“In general, sport is able to bring the community together and teach skills like respect and acceptance.”

Simon is in Juja as a weltwärts volunteer for one year and supports PlayHandball’s partner organization “PendoAmaniYouthOrganization” on site. In the following interview, our volunteer Simon talks about his experience so far:

PLAY HANDBALL: Why is handball important for you and what has it done for you?

Simon: It’s such important for me because I already play handball for over 14 years and it brings a lot of joy. The team spirit is what makes it so special for me. It brought me in this project which I really enjoy and I am convinced that it will help a lot of people in different terms.

PLAY HANDBALL: How did you heard about PLAY HANDBALL KE?

Simon: I heard about PlayHandball through weltwaerts when I searched for possible projects for my volunteer service. This project caught immediately my attention.

PLAY HANDBALL: Why did you decided to become a Handball Volunteer in Kenya?

Simon: When I decided to do the volunteer service with PlayHandball, it wasn’t important for me, where I go. The project was the main factor of my motivation to do this. When I heard that the project is also going on in Kenya, it was much more interesting for me than South Africa.

PLAY HANDBALL: How long have you been now a handball volunteer in Kenya?

Simon: Now, I am four months here in Kenya and cannot believe how fast the time flies…

PLAY HANDBALL: What was the most memorable experience?

Simon: In the beginning of 2022, we did with some other volunteers here in Kenya a bike trip which was the most exhausting but at the same time the most enjoyable bike trip I’ve ever made.

PLAY HANDBALL: What was the greatest challenge until now?

Simon: For now, the biggest challenge is still that the schools don’t understand how the kids will profit from the training and how much it helps them to develop social skills,… Another big problem is that we are very limited because of the available equipment like balls.

PLAY HANDBALL: How do you experience the handball coaching at school/ community?

Simon: The first time we had some organisation problems in the schools. Right now, it’s going really well and of course the best part are the students who have a lot of fun in the training with getting the opportunity to get trained in handball. Also, most of the teachers are really welcoming and sometimes even take part in the training.

PLAY HANDBALL: How has your work had an impact on you and in the community?

Simon: The training showed so far what is possible with training students and how much joy and fun is gained by the game. In general, sport is able to bring the community together and teach skills like respect and acceptance. Personally, I have gained more experience in coaching handball and skills which are related like team building.

PLAY HANDBALL: How is the life with a local Kenyan host family?

Simon: My host family is caring a lot and treating me like their own son. They always want me to be home on time. The fun and action parts are not too short in the daily life with my hosts when the whole family comes over.

PLAY HANDBALL: Any additional stories you’d like to share or note about your volunteer experience:

Simon: Soon, I will be playing in a handball team here in Nairobi to keep up with my own handball skills, so that I’m not too far behind when I will go back to Germany.

PLAY HANDBALL: Any other comments or sentiments you’d like to share:

Simon: Since now, I really enjoy my time here and the partner organization is just great. I already know that I will come back to Kenya again after that year.




More in this category: Holiday Camp in Kenya » Start of Handball and Volunteer Season » Play Handball Supercup in Kenya » Our volunteers Paul, Konrad and Henning in Tansania » PlayHandball at the weltwärts conference in Kigali, Rwanda » Interview with Nicola Scholl, about her project trip to Botswana, Zimbabwe and Kenya. » Midterm Seminars in Botswana and Kenya » Interview with our team in Botswana » TYCE Holiday Activities » Friendly Tournament at the Observatory Junior School » Sport Day in Utawala, Kenya » Volunteer Arrival and PlayHandball in Botswana » PlayHandball as part of the GloKnoCo Project in Brighton » Sophia tells about her first weeks in Kenya » Martin Bergers handball experience in Africa » Linah tells about her experiences as a participant of the Trilateral Youth Coaches Encounter » Christian tells of his experiences as a volunteer in Lamberts Bay » PlayHandball part of the GloKnoCo School in Brussels » Lisza reports from her experiences as a volunteer in Cape Town » Mid-term seminar with our weltwaerts-volunteers » Martin Berger inspires with handball in Kenya » Lars tells of his experiences as a volunteer in Darling » Kick-off-Weekend of the Trilateral Youth Coaches Exchange » Virtual exchange connects young coaches from Germany, Kenya and South Africa. » Re-launch of the Weltwärts Volunteer Program in Kenya and South Africa. » Community Talk with Mike from Pendo Amani in Juja, Kenya » Handball is growing in Kisumu County – 17 teams at first county tournament in by EmpowerGirlsPlus » A year full of uncertainty, waiting and flexibility instead of experiencing South Africa as a handball volunteer. » Play Handball Corona Aid helps over 1000 people in South Africa and Kenya. » Update PHKE: In every challenge there is always something we can do as a sport for development organisation » Midterm-Seminar and Partner Meeting » Léon reports from his experience as volunteer by our partner organisation Empower Gils Plus in Kisumu, Kenia » Jasper is one of the first volunteers in Kenya and reports from his experience » German Handball Stars are so polite – Kenian Play Handball Coordinator travels to Germany » Hanna reports from her experiences in 2 different communities around Cape Town » Laura tells of her experiences as a volunteer in Cape Town » PendoAmani in Kenya & PLAY HANDBALL initiate Handball After School Program » From Blomberg to the Cape – As volunteer coaches in South Africa » Meet The Volunteer: Sophia experiences township life in Jo’burg » Play Handball Volunteer Programme extends to Kenya » Interview with our Swiss volunteer Daniel Schettler » Supercup inspires over 450 children in Africa » Karibu Kenya! Play Handball Supercup in Kisumu » Handball for UNSDG13 Climate Action – Workshop & Clean-Up » Interview with the volunteer Matti Schubert » Learners embrace new sport » VOLUNTEER INTERVIEW with SIMON UTTKE » PLAY HANDBALL starts in Kenya in 2017 » THE START OF A NEW HANDBALL VOLUNTEER PROGRAM »
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