In the UK; Our club president Gary Lamb, Tel: +44 (0) 7880732078
In Kenya; Our club Chairman & Club Captain Jose Theuri, Tel: +254 (0) 728113715
WHO ARE SUNDERLAND AFC KEROCHE & HOW DID THEY BECOME TO EXIST ? HERE IS OUR STORY, ALONG WITH OUR ACHIEVEMENTS.
SUNDERLAND AFC KEROCHE ARE A FOOTBALL TEAM & ACADEMY FROM THE VILLAGE OF KARAI, ON THE OUTSKIRTS OF NAIVASHA TOWN, IN KENYA.
WE RELY SOLELY UPON SPONSORSHIP/DONATIONS/CONTRIBUTIONS FROM SUNDERLAND FANS & FOOTBALL FANS WORLDWIDE, TO KEEP OUR CLUB & ACADEMY ALIVE, AND CONTINUE OUR AMAZING SUCCESS.
UNLIKE OTHER TOP KENYAN TEAMS, WHO ARE “COMPANY TEAMS” WITH LARGE COMPANY FUNDING, WE ARE, TO OUR KNOWLEDGE, THE FIRST EVER “COMMUNITY TEAM” (A team funded solely by it’s donations/contributions and sponsorship, from fans) TO SUCCESSFULLY GAIN PROMOTION INTO THE KENYAN NATIONAL LEAGUES.
BUT THE COST OF SUCCESS COMES AT A HIGHER PRICE, SUCH AS HIGHER REGISTRATION FEES, HIGHER REFEREES FEES, AND HIGHER AWAY TRAVEL FEES, (Some journeys in Div. 1 are up to 15hrs each way, meaning we need to depart the previous day, with an overnight stay) WHICH IS WHY WE ARE ALWAYS LOOKING FOR EXTRA SPONSORS or DONORS. (Please see the bottom of this page if you can help in any way, no matter how small or large)
YOUR CONTRIBUTIONS/DONATIONS/SPONSORSHIP HELP TO GIVE OUR TEAM AND ACADEMY THE OPPORTUNITIES IN LIFE, THAT MOST AROUND THE GLOBE TAKE FOR GRANTED.
Sunderland AFC Keroche, began in the village of Karai, on the outskirts of the town of Naivasha, Kenya in January 2012.
Karai village is a very humble area, where only 1 in 28 of the adults have a full-time job.
It all began as a way of trying to give the youth of the area a focus in life, to keep them away from life’s darker temptations such as drugs, crime and alcohol etc.
It started quite simply as a group of football loving young men forming a football team, but they had no kit, no boots, and no pitch, but they give themselves the name of Sunderland AFC Keroche for 2 reasons;- (1) The then manager elect was a Sunderland fan, (2) The village sits in the shadow of the huge KEROCHE BREWERY (Kenya’s second largest brewery)
The boys played friendly games against other local villages, but soon realised that they were quite a good team, as they were winning all their games (Even though they were playing in bare feet, on pitches in other villages) So they approached the local village school and asked if they could use their spare land to play games, and originally erected 2 goals made from tree branches.
One day, the then manager “Paul Kimani” approached a Sunderland fan in England called Gary Lamb (Via Facebook) to ask if there was a possibility of trying to donate kits and boots etc. After checking out the team and satisfied everything was genuine, Gary put out an appeal for Sunderland shirts, plus boots, shorts and socks etc. and was overwhelmed by the response, not only items for the football team, but donations also included items such as clothing, bedding, mattresses, children’s toys, bikes, school books, pens, pencils, toothbrushes & toothpaste, and much more, So SUNDERLAND AFC KEROCHE, the school and their village of Karai, became a whole new place.
Village elder Joseph Muchina, told us that since the project started, that crime in the village area has dropped by over 70%, because all the young children and youths are now attending football training 4 evenings a week. Sadly Joseph passed away on Monday 4/3/2019
OUR HISTORY & AWARDS
Ground; The ECO LOGIC PARTNERS STADIUM OF LIGHT
We walk onto the pitch to; “Can’t help falling in love with you” #WISEMENSAY
Nickname; The Black Panthers
Founded; JANUARY 22nd 2012.
Promoted from THE Divisional league to Sub Branch league in 2014 (1st promotion)
Kenya/England Friendship Cup Winners 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & RUNNERS UP IN 2020. WINNERS IN 2021 & 2022. (Winners 9 TIMES in 10 YEARS)
Promoted from Sub Branch League to Branch League in 2015. (2nd promotion)
Naivasha FA Cup Runners Up in 2016. (a ONE OFF TOURNAMENT)
Mucananda Cup Winners 2014, 2015, 2016 & 2017 Runners up in 2018. (No longer contested)
Governors Kinuthia Mbugua’s Cup Winners 2016 & 2017. (NO LONGER CONTESTED)
CDF Tournament, runners up in 2018.
Promoted from Branch League to National Division 2 in 2018 (3rd Promotion)
BRADLEY LOWERY CUP 2019 Winners, 19/05/19 won 4-0 against Kihoto Mags #WEDIDIT4BRADLEY.
BRADLEY LOWERY CUP 2020 Winners, won final 3-0 against Viwandani FC #WEDIDITFORBRADLEY.
BRADLEY LOWERY CUP 2021: Winners 8/2/21 we beat GRVL FC 4-0 in the final #WEDIDITFORBRADLEY.
BRADLEY LOWERY CUP 2022: Winners 22/1/22 we beat NAIVASHA WAZEE 3-0 in the final #WEDIDITFORBRADLEY. (This was on the date of our 10yr anniversary)
FAIR TRADE TOURNAMENT, WINNERS 2016, RUNNERS UP 2017 & 2018, WINNERS IN 2019 RUNNERS UP IN 2022.
NAIVASHA FOOTBALL BONANZA TOURNAMENT, WINNERS 2020.
SYFA ALLSTARS INTERSTATES TOURNAMENT, WINNERS 29/11/20, Won 1-0 against SYFA Select 11.
STARS OF THE FUTURE TOURNAMENT 2019, Our under 15’s academy made the semi-finals, and our under 17’s academy were runners up, in their respective age groups.
2020 NEW HOPE SOCCER EXTRAVAGANZA UNDER 13’s TOURNAMENT, WINNERS 30/12/20
2020 NEW HOPE SOCCER EXTRAVAGANZA UNDER 16’s TOURNAMENT, WINNERS 30/12/20
2022 NEW HOPE SOCCER EXTRAVAGANZA UNDER 13’s TOURNAMENT, SEMI-FINALISTS
2022 NEW HOPE SOCCER EXTRAVAGANZA UNDER 17’s TOURNAMENT, WINNERS
MHESH WAROTHE HELLSGATE WARD NORTH TOURNAMENT: WINNERS 21/2/21
MHESH WAROTHE HELLSGATE WARD GRAND FINAL: WINNERS 28/2/21 we beat WILDFIRE FC 1-0
7/11/21 WE GAINED ANOTHER PROMOTION TO DIVISION 1, AFTER BEEN CROWNED THE OVERALL WINNERS OF DIVISION 2. (4th PROMOTION)
That is 4 promotions in our first 9yrs and on February 6th 2022 we started competing in the Kenyan National 1st Division. It also makes us the “Most successful club in Kenya” in the last 10 yrs, (due to the amount of achievements over those 1st 9yrs)
On Sunday January 9th 2022, Our Wazee team (Our old men) won the OLD MENS CUP after they beat NAIVASHA POLICE FC in the final 1-0.
Saturdayday 29th January 2022, We won the final of the STUART ANDERSON MEMORIAL CUP after defeating FEYENOORD FC 4-0 in the final.
Also on 29th January 2022, Our Senior academy lads won the NAIVASHA ACADEMY’S CUP FINAL, after defeating VIWANDANI ACADEMY 2-1.
On Sunday 30th January 2022, we were the runners up in the MP JAYNE KIHARA’S SUPERCUP TOURNAMENT, after losing 1-2 in the final against OSERIAN FC. (195 teams entered this tournament.)
On Sunday 13/2/22 our Wazee team won the FRIENDS OF DAVID TOURNAMENT, after playing and winning 3 games in 1 day. They beat KIHOTO YOUTH FC (Who are nicknamed The Magpies) 3-2 on penalties after the final ended 0-0.
In just 10yrs, our club have now won a total of 32 cup/tournament finals, including those won by our 1st team, Academy teams, and Wazee team, and in those 11 yrs a total of 32 senior academy players have progressed into the 1st team, which is a great testament to the senior players, and coaches, who give up their free time to help coach our young talents.
We have also been runners-up in 9 different cup finals, within the last 11yrs. (Meaning we have made it to 41 cup finals in 11yrs)
Our Senior Under 21’s academy also hold a 11yr record of ONLY 1 DEFEAT since our club were formed in 2012, that single defeat was in 2014, and they now remain “unbeaten” for the last 9yrs.
The 2 pictures directly above show some of our academy kids proudly wearing their “BRADLEY LOWERY” shirts
Since the SUNDERLAND AFC KEROCHE project started in 2012, we have achieved the following through donations and sponsorship from Sunderland fans, mainly in the UK.
1, The school pitch has been levelled, and seeded to become one of the best pitches in the area. (Voted best pitch in the branch leagues in 2018) At the time of levelling pitch, the estimated cost of this in the UK would have been; £50-£60,000, but in Kenya the total cost was the equivalent of £800.
2, New full size metal goalposts have been fitted.
3, Home and away dugouts have been erected.
4, The first team have had 4 promotions, and our club have won 32 cup competitions, and been runners-up in 9 other cup tournaments. (On the 6th Nov. 2021 they gained their 4th promotion, to the Kenyan National Division 1)
5, We now have a thriving academy, currently attended by 130 kids, (Including a few girls) and constantly growing. Please view the academy section of our website at the following link: http://safckeroche.com/academy/
6, We have installed a full fresh water supply to Karai school, (Where our pitch is based) giving the 900+ pupils fresh clean water for the first time ever. (We class this as one of our biggest achievements to date)
7, So far 32 senior academy players have progressed into the 1st team squad.
8, Six first team players have progressed to Kenyan premier league and super league teams, and now make a living through football. (Which is one of our main aims, as we provide them with a stage to showcase their talents)
9, To our knowledge, we are the only Kenyan football team outside of the KPL (Kenyan Premier League) to have our own worldwide website, which was built and funded totally free of charge by ANDRE BOMAR our I.T. genius from Atlanta, Georgia, USA. This has helped us greatly to secure a number of Main sponsors, as we can offer them free advertising in return for their sponsorship. It also gives YOU OUR FANS the opportunity to find out all you need to know, about our club & academy.
10, One small corner of Kenya has become Red & White crazy, and our fanbase continues to grow due to our success. Even though most Kenyan football fans follow the big 6 English premier league teams, you will still see more Sunderland shirts on the streets of Naivasha Town than any other team. A large number of fans now even follow our team to away games. And even stop on the way home to do do victory dances (See the short video below)
11, From our humble beginning in 2012, We have now become one of the most respected teams in Kenya.
AND WE TAKE PRIDE IN OUR BELIEF TO INVITE PLAYERS AND KIDS FROM ALL BACKGROUNDS AND RELIGIONS.
12, On Dec. 31st 2018 our club were voted SPORTS TEAM OF THE YEAR in the Kenyan 2018 Gala awards (Kenya’s equivalent of Sports personality of the year) and our then, Centre Forward James “Okeke” Ollise was voted “Most Valuable player of the year”
13, On Saturday January 12th 2019, we installed a new smaller sized training pitch, adjacent to our main pitch, complete with smaller 12ft x 6ft goals. This smaller pitch will enable our boys to improve their moving and passing game, with fast 2 touch, 5 or 6 a side games, but it will also be used for our academy kids, and all the 900+ pupils in Karai School, where our pitch is based. This pitch was funded by JAMES STOKOE a Sunderland fan from the Isle of Man, UK.
14, We now stream all our league games live on our teams Facebook page, kick-off in UK is 10am UK winter time, and 11am UK summer time. This is our Facebook page link https://www.facebook.com/sunderlandafckeroche/
15, On Friday 5th April 2019, we formed a partnership with the BRADLEY LOWERY FOUNDATION, this partnership goes under the hash tag #WEARINGITFORBRADLEY and our academy Shirts have #4BRAD on the back. For more information on our partnership, please read the following link from our home. page: http://safckeroche.com/2019/04/06/our-partnership-with-the-bradley-lowery-foundation/
Since this partnership was formed, our club annually host THE BRADLEY LOWERY CUP (Kenya) where 3 different teams each year, are invited along with our own team, to play in the tournament, with 2 semi-finals and the final all held on the same day. We are proud to announce that we won this tournament in 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 and were runners up in 2023.
16, In September 2019, we presented a new water tank to the Karai Secondary school (Based at our pitch location) So now both schools at our pitch have a clean supply of water, this was funded by MR. BRIAN HIGGINS from WALSALL, UK.
17, WE NOW PRIDE OURSELVES WITH THE EXTRA WORK WE DO IN THE COMMUNITY.
During 2019, We began an initiative to help other schools and sporting organisations within our community, who struggle for any form of sports kit. With donations of 2nd hand kit from local teams and clubs in the North East of England, we have been distributing their donated kits to others, and so far we have been able to distribute Kits to the following: Karai Secondary School, Karai Primary School, Rubiri School, Nyamathi Academy, Naivasha volleyball team, Naivasha Ladies team, Pipeline FC, Kihoto FC, Site FC Academy, New Hope FC Academy, Maai Mahiu FC. Kayole Superstars FC, Nyamathi Secondary School, any many more.
UPDATE: WE HAVE NOW PRESENTED MATCHING KITS TO OVER 80 DIFFERENT SPORTS CLUBS/FOOTBALL TEAMS/SCHOOLS AND FOOTBALL ACADEMIES, IN AND AROUND OUR REGION, AND IN DECEMBER 2020 and DECEMBER 2021 WE WERE VOTED AS KENYA’S “COMMUNITY CLUB OF THE YEAR” FOR OUR WORK HELPING OTHER LESS FORTUNATE TEAMS/SPORTING ORGANISATIONS.
Here are just a few of those presentations, with teams now wearing kits donated by North East clubs.
18, At the beginning of the 2019 season, we installed some bench seating around our pitch, mainly so our village elder fans had somewhere to sit during games:
19. On December 14th 2019, our club swept the boards at the 2019 Gala sports awards winning the following;-
Sports tournament team of the year.
Coach of the year (Coach Scato)
Sportsperson of the year (Capt. Jose)
Sponsor of the year (Our UK president Gary Lamb)
Football Fan of the year (Our fan Julius)
Team fans of the year (Presented to our Vice chairman, John Eilbeck)
Academy team of the year (Presented to Academy coach “Ngasho”)
20, In the 2020 Gala awards held at the Merlin resort in Naivasha, we were voted as:-
Kenya’s “Community club of the year”, for our work helping other sporting teams
and our 1st team were once again voted as Team of the year.
21, At the beginning of the 2021 season, we introduced another team into our club. (1) Our “Wazee” team, (When translated into English, Wazee means “Old men”) this can be compared to an over 35/40s team in the UK, but here it was to give an opportunity, not only to some of our older former 1st team players, but also to some of our loyal fans, who are reasonable players, but not at the standard of our 1st team players.
Our Wazee team.
On 9th January 2022, Our Wazee team won the OLD MENS CUP FINAL beating NAIVASHA POLICE 1-0. and on Sunday February 13th 2022 they also won THE FRIENDS OF DAVID TOURNAMENT, where they played 3 games in 1 day, to become the winners beating KIHOTO FC (who are nicknamed the “Magpies”) 3-2 in the final.
22, In January 2021 our club captain Joseph Theuri aka “Jose” was elected to the committee of the FKF (Football Kenya Federation) for the Nakuru County region, and appointed the role of Youth Developement officer. This was a very proud moment for our club, as he was recognised by the FKF as a dedicated and very learned member of the local football community.
23, On the 7th November 2021, we gained our 4th promotion in 9yrs, after we won our division 2 pool, then we were crowned overall division 2 champions, after winning the promotion play-off finals. When returning back to Naivasha the following day we were given an open topped victory parade through the town, which ended with a party at the Barrell Club.
24, On Sunday 19th Decemder 2021, our club won 5 awards at the 2021 Gala awards.
1, Sports Team of the year; SUNDERLAND AFC KEROCHE
2, Football Coach of the year: OUR HEAD COACH, PAUL NJUGUNAH aka “KAPOLO”
3, Football Captain of the year; OUR CAPT, JOSEPH THEURI
4, Football fan of the year: OUR FAN, JULIUS ONSARE (Who never missed a game home & away all season)
5, Football player of the year: 2 OF OUR PLAYERS, FELIX ODIHAMBO aka “PHILO and JOHNNY GATHOGO tied in the voting, as the joint winners.
25, In November 2022, we took the decision to rent 2 single room houses within 50mtrs of our pitch, allowing us to attract quality players from outside our region, by offering them free accomodation.
We were able to get these 2 houses, for only 2,000Ksh per month in rent (in UK sterling this equals approx £7 per month for each house)
These houses give us the options of mulitiple uses IE; On home matchdays, one of them doubles up as our changing room, giving players a bit of dignity, instead of changing at the side of the pitch. It also allows us to discuss in private, game tactics, and team meetings without crowds listening in.
These houses were an immediate succeess, when we had trials prior to the beginning of the 2022-23 season, when 25 players from all corners of Kenya came along for a week of trials, of which 9 were successful in gaining a registration for the season, strengthening our team considerably in all area’s of the pitch.
The list of achievements in just 10yrs goes on and on.
In the early years the cost of funding the whole team and academy was around £3,200 per season, but as our academy grew in numbers (it now has 130 kids), and after our 1st team gained a 4th promotion to the National 1st Division, this has risen to around £15,00 for the season. This is mainly down to the extra travelling involved to away games, which will be much further afield, as the 1st team will now be travelling nationwide (most of which we need to leave the day before and can now be a 15hr drive each way, compared to 2hrs maximum in the early yrs) When you consider that this covers 130 academy players, 30 1st players, plus coaches and other club staff, but it also includes all our match fees, registration fees, refs fees, and travel expenses etc. etc.
Without donations and sponsorship from Sunderland fans and football fans around the world, plus businesses, the team, academy and the extra projects around the school, and the village plus our community work around our region would cease to exist.
If you can find it in your hearts to donate/sponsor or help in any way possible, please contact our clubs UK President GARY LAMB on UK mobile;- 07880732078
or you can donate in the following ways:
By bank transfer: For details call Gary on UK Mobile: 07880732078
Or by cheque made payable to SAFC KEROCHE, and send to Gary Lamb in the UK. You can call Gary on UK mobile: 07880732078, for the address to post.
Or via PayPal to: firstname.lastname@example.org
If all our fans (We now have almost 10,000 on our Facebook page) were able to donate just £2 each per season, our team and academy would continue to thrive. Every penny donated goes towards the running costs of the club.
No-one within our club takes any form of wages or payment. Except one our our players who does not have a job, he receives 600ksh per week to wash all our kit. Sometimes this can be 3 full sets of kit, per week. (600ksh = approx £4 depending upon exchange rates). All monies raised go towards the future progression of our club and academy.
Sponsorship packages start from as little as £50 per season (to sponsor a player), and at the top end, to become a main sponsor of one of our academies, (Our Under 17’s, Under 15’s, Under 13’s and junior academies are still available to sponsor) or to become main club sponsor, these are £500 per season, but come with many benefits, Such as: (A) Free advertising here on our website, plus your name or your company name, will appear on numerous other pages of our website. (B) Your name or your company name appear on the header picture of our clubs Facebook home page. (C) Your name or company name on the sponsors board at our pitch in Kenya.
If we manage to raise over our intended target for the 2023-24 season, we already have plans to build an outdoor exercise area, with numerous exercise stations, which can be used by both the team/academy but also by the schools 900+ pupils. The total cost of this is approx £1,200 – £1,500, a snip compared to what it would cost in the UK. (Where 1 exercise station alone is approx £2,500) These exercise stations will include Pull up bars, bench press, and fixed hurdles etc and are open to a sponsorship deal.
Please check the “SPONSORSHIP PACKAGES” tab on our home page. or click this link: http://safckeroche.com/sponsorshippackages/
HOW DO WE USE YOUR SPONSORSHIP?
ALL SPONSORSHIP MONEY/DONATIONS/CONTRIBUTIONS GO INTO A CENTRAL POOL, TO COVER THE BASIC COSTS OF RUNNING THE ACADEMY AND 1st TEAM, AND SUPPLYING ALL OUR PLAYERS WITH THE REQUIRED KIT.
THIS MONEY IS HELD IN A UK BANK ACCOUNT, (Lloyds Bank at Seaham, UK) AND SENT TO THE TEAM VIA “MONEYGRAM” TRANSACTIONS, AS AND WHEN REQUIRED.
MAIN EXPENSES INCLUDE;-
Please note; EXCHANGE RATES VARY BETWEEN 1,000ksh = £7.00 – £7.50
LEAGUE REGISTRATION FEES (30,000ksh per season)
PLAYERS REGISTRATION FEES (300ksh, for each player, total 9,000ksh)
PLAYERS REGISTRATION CARDS (150 ksh each (Which must be shown to match officials at all games)
REFEREES FEES (7,500ksh per game, both home and away)
SECURITY FEES AT HOME GAMES (All teams must supply a minimum of 2 armed uniformed security personnel at all home games, IE; Police or army @ 2,000ksh per guard )
TRAVEL EXPENSES TO AWAY GAMES IN DIVISION 1 (This is our biggest outlay during the season, 5 away games alone in Division 2 cost between 60,000-70,000ksh each game, due to the long journeys. Now in Division 1 those journeys can increase up to 15hrs each way, and include an overnight stay on the night before a game) In Division 1, 12 of our away games exceed 70,000ksh per game in expenses.
PRINTING COSTS (Of FKF official paperwork, registrations, training schedules etc)
ENTRY FEES TO CUP TOURNAMENTS (Varies depending on the tournament)
STOCKING OF FIRST AID KIT (A league requirement)
REPAIRS TO BALLS (150ksh per ball = £1.20p. EXAMPLE; due to the conditions of Kenyan pitches, we average 6 repairs per week)
REPLACEMENT KIT, (But only If urgently required) ETC. ETC.
CLUBHOUSES RENT, 2,000kshs per month
AMBULANCE at all home games: 10,000ksh every home game
Maintenance of the pitch IE; cutting the grass and line marking averages 1,000ksh per week.
If you have any questions,
Please feel free to ask by calling, texting or message via Whatsapp to our UK president Gary Lamb on UK mobile; 07880732078. Or email: email@example.com
Finally, we would also like to invite you to enjoy our 23min documentary, which was made by media students from Sunderland university in the UK, for their dissatation in 2014, just 2 yrs after we were founded. It also captures our 1st ever Cup final win. When we won the KENYA/ENGLAND FRIENDSHIP CUP
Just click on the following link;
Thank you for taking the time to read our story & achievements.