Hundreds of millions of kids play football every day. For many of them, footbal grants are the only way to access education or the ticket to a better future, and, in some cases, it is their only way to survive. The life of Mubiru Rigan depends on one of these sport grants.
Mubiru Rigan, dreams of becoming a figure like Fernando Torres “El niño” and score the goal that brings Uganda their first African Cup. But he never had an easy life. When he was not even 4 years old his mother abandoned him in the toxic waste dump that surrounds Nelson Mandela’s National Football Stadium in Uganda. For a while, Rigan survived by selling scrap metal and stealing, around waste and football, always on the run from local mafias. There, he was discovered by a trainer, who got him a sports grant that allowed him to go back to school, feed daily and play football, becoming, only six years old, the school team and district star. Although they are the poorest team of the region, the kids use their food money to sign up for the tournaments, they confront the humiliations of older boys, the thefts or illnesses like malaria, just to be able to play together. For them, this is much more than sport – this is being part of a family that support each other. Nevertheless, their dreams are broken when the school director steals the grant money, leaving Rigan and his friends on the street again.
The only person that tries to help this team is Papira Anthony, a football player from Gulu. Papira grew up in the LRA Guerrilla and with the child soldiers of Jospeh Kony, and he is a perfect example of how football help thousands of children every day, even in the worst moments of war. His story inspires them and gives them strength to tackle on the last tournament, the one that would give them back their education and his dreams.