NKONGSAMBA – At one time it was the colonial centre for coffee in Cameroon, but today it is a rather worn-down city, almost forgotten by the authorities. Some of our friends from Cameroon even call it a “cursed city”, as if it attracted misfortune. Yet Nkongsamba, to the north-east of Douala – a city that amongst other things gave birth to one of Inter’s treble heroes Samuel Eto’o – welcomed the Inter Campus staff and activities with great joy.
The local coaches and children participated en masse in the games and training activities organised, as if to prove the gossip-mongers rumours wrong with their actions and enthusiasm. The weather was cool for the short rainy season, which helped Inter Campus coaches Alberto Giacomini, Silvio Guareschi and Fabio Perfetti – always tireless both in the classroom and on the training pitch – go about their tasks.
A lot of useful preparation work was done by local contact Francis Kammogne, our partner at the Centre Sportif Camerounais, associated with the Educational Guidance Centre in Barzio (Centro Orientamento Educativo – COE). Some of the local coaches, as is typical in these places, turned up right at the last moment for the Coaches’ Training Course, and finding food and accommodation for forty people in a place so lacking in facilities and infrastructure is not easy. It all went off well in the end though, and the gratitude was unanimous and genuine – perhaps precisely because it is so rare to find people willing to come back regularly and work in overlooked locations like this.