A Ugandan teen from the slums becomes a chess star and a Disney character

27 Dec

Mutesi is a ugandan girl, that has  never attend school. She grew up in a slum  called “Katwe” in Uganda’s capital city Kampala. Her father died of AIDS when she was three years old, and as a child she had to beg for food for herself, and for her family. 

But no one  saw this one  coming, that Phionas talent would change her life.

The story, which has now become a book ‘Queen of Katwe, and soon to be a Disney movie, started in 2005, when Phiona Mutesi attended a community center, ran by  missionary Robert Katende. Robert  offered children a bowl of porridge for free if they wanted to learn how to play chess, porridge was one of the reasons why Phiona kept on coming to the community center. In her biography she says, that “in the beginning  chess was  just a bowl of porridge for me.”

 “I have lived a hard life, where I slept on the street, and I couldn’t find anything to eat ,” said Phiona Mutesi to CNN.

It was obvious  to see that  Phiona was talented when it came to  playing chess. An “extraordinary talent” as her coach Robert Katende said.
Phiona liked to play chess, that She walked every day six  kilometer to the community center for training – and to get a portion of food.

Within one year she was playing so well, that she could beat the older girls and boys who also were participating in Robert Katendes chess project. Since then she has won several junior championships in Uganda, and she has represented Uganda at international tournaments. She has been in Sudan, Turkey, Siberia and the U.S., in the biography ‘Queen of Katwe’ she described, her  first flight experience for her mother in a letter like this “I thought I was in heaven.”

Meanwhile, Phiona Mutesi has learned to read and write, and she has even learned to speak English.  Phiona has decided that she wants to become a doctor.
“Chess has given me the opportunity to go to school again. And shown me that there is another life, “she says in her biography.


One Response to “A Ugandan teen from the slums becomes a chess star and a Disney character”

  1. Dona December 31, 2012 at 13:45 #

    God is good!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: