Ilitch School student collects goods for Ugandan children

 

Mike Ilitch School of Business students regularly make a difference here in Detroit, but Nick Mutebi, a management major, is expanding his altruism to a children’s program in Uganda with a clothing and sports equipment drive.

He is collecting gently used clothing, shoes and any non-WSU athletic equipment at the Matthaei Physical Education Center from now until Dec. 8 for Opening Doors, an organization his family runs to help educate mentally disabled children aged 4-18 on various life skills.

Mutebi splits his time between the Wayne State men’s basketball team, the Wayne African Student Society and his courses at the Ilitch School, but still finds time to travel back to his parents’ home town of Kampala, Uganda, to assist with Opening Doors.

“Opening Doors tries to teach life skills to children and young adults so they can have a good life and be contributing members of society,” he said. “Quite a few of them are abandoned, and so my parents and my aunts and uncles try to do something good and teach them how to read and write and life skills like candle making and sewing to earn money.”

Working with the organization over the years and now organizing the drive has developed his management skills, too, something he said will help him succeed in his future career.

“The drive has definitely taught me how to market better in terms of spreading the word,” he said. “I’ve been collaborating with Greek life and business professors, and those skills are important for me going into business because I’ll use these lessons later.”

He said he was inspired by his parents’ generosity and commitment to bettering the lives of underserved children to create the drive, and decided on a sporting goods and clothes drive.

“The kids love to run and they love to play,” he said. “I wanted to bring them tennis balls, baseball mitts, baseball bats and other equipment for them to use in their spare time when they're not working or learning.”

“The kids don’t have a lot, so I wanted to figure out a way to bring them as much as I could.”

A donation box is set up in Matthaei. Contact Mutebi at nicholas.mutebi@wayne.edu with any questions about the drive.

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