On 8th March 2017, at the occasion of International Women’s Day, the United Nations Secretary General, Mr. Antonio Guterres visited Mlango Kubwa community of Mathare. This special occasion occurred at the Slum Soccer football pitch, a community public space created by young women and men with the support of UN-HABITAT. Located in the heart of the community, the pitch is a perfect spot for all children and young people to play sports as well as host other community events.
Two local women’s teams were brought to greet Mr. Guterres and showcase their talents to invited guests and the residents of Mlango Kubwa. Despite the bright sun and high temperatures, the pick-up game created a great atmosphere to welcome the Secretary General in style. “Up for Slum Dwellers”, sponsored by UN-HABITAT’s slum upgrading campaign, represented UN-HABITAT at the “Global Goals World Cup” which took place the weekend before the SGs visit. Up for Slum Dwellers took on Katalands, a local team from Mathare. Together they promoted SDG 11 and advocating for more accessible and safer spaces to play sports in informal settlements.
Wendy Achieng, the captain of “Up for Slum Dwellers” team introduced both of the teams to the Secretary General and presented him with a small gift, a custom-made T-shirt promoting SDG 11. In return, Mr. Guterres honored the girls with the first kick-off of the game.
Both the Mlango Kubwa community as well as the UN family were honored and proud to see the Secretary General in the field, so early on in his term.
Secretary General, Mr. Antonio Guterres inaugurating the Slum Soccer Football Pitch