Mohamed Kayongo: Former Ugandan boxing champion turns to next generation

Now, mentoring young people in Minneapolis, Minnesota in the United States, and in his hometown of Kampala, Uganda, Kayongo is training the next generation to discover their own independence through boxing.

Kayongo stepped into his coaching role at the Northside Boxing Club in Minneapolis after retiring from a successful boxing career. Nicknamed “the African assassin”, he boxed for the Ugandan national team and won a silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in Manchester in 2002.

In 2003, he launched a career as a professional boxer in Minnesota, eventually obtaining US citizenship. “Once I got freedom, I had to retire so I [could] pass it on to the next generation,” he said.

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In Northside, Kayongo runs summer programs that teach boxing, financial literacy, and black history to underserved local youth. He also founded Northside’s sister organization, Godfather Boxing Academy, halfway around the world in Kampala, which provides food, shelter and tuition to children in need.

“It was my promise to return [to] build a shelter gym,” Kayongo explained. “Everyone needs to get involved. [and] take care of these children because they are the next generation in the community. »

Watch the video at the top of this page to learn more about how Kayongo’s past as a child soldier influenced his desire to change the lives of young people.

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