Our Mission

Why We Exist

Our mission is to serve, empower, and advocate for at-risk youth through sustainable, quality
sports ministry, which facilitates community, education, and ultimately spiritual growth.

Our vision is to see the youth of Rwanda come to know and love God so
that they can become leaders who will change their country and the world.

Started in 2009, as Play For Hope, The Kefa Project is all about seeing at-risk youth transformed in every aspect of their lives. Kefa pronounced kay-fuh is a Rwandan spelling of Kepha or Cephas the name Jesus gave Peter when he was declared the rock. We want every child's life to built on a solid rock, a firm foundation.

We love sports. But we do so much more than sports. Our beliefs are rooted in the Nicene Creed. But to put it more simply we have been transformed by Jesus and want to share that same love with others. (1)

Sports are an avenue for us to create families for at-risk youth in Rwanda. Our goal is to help them feel welcomed, no longer alone, to help them re-enter education both formally and informally, learn finance and business skills, be reconciled to their own families, to know God, and change themselves and then their communities.

Our Team

100% of Those Working on the Ground Are African.

Richard Rwamahungu

Technical Director

Emile Ngiruwonsanga

Academy Director

Grace Nyinawumuntu

Office Manager

Pascal Niyigaba


Valentine Murebwayire


Ezekial Hitiyakare


Akili Rachid


Dieudonne Muyenzi


Damascene Rutagengwa

Academy Life

Gady Munyaneza

Academy Education

Beatrice Kabayije

Academy Mom

Felicien Muhirwa

Academy Farm Manager/Assistant Cook

Eric Nsabiyumva


Isaac Twagirayezu

Injury Prevention Specialist

Willy Bayangama

Equipment Manager

Ernestine Mukanyandwi


Jean Pierre Muhire

Academy Cook

Eric Iracyadukunda

Catch-Up School Coach

Jean de Dieu Billgates Ndarihoranye

Academy Computer Science Teacher

For compliance with local Rwandan law, the Kefa Project and our staff are partnered together with Lawyers of Hope - a Rwandan NGO.

Our Board

The Board That Plays Together Is The Board That Stays Together?

Brian Beckman

Executive Director/Founder

Brian founded the Kefa Project (formerly Play For Hope) in 2009 after a trip to Rwanda in 2008 with a deep desire to see sports used to bring love to the most vulnerable youth in Rwanda and beyond. He graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with degrees in Exercise and Sport Science and Psychology. He is FMS Level 1 Certified and has experience in various clinical and training settings. In his spare time he enjoys picking up 20L jerry cans in odd ways.

Kylee Barton

Board Secretary

Kylee Barton grew up playing soccer and serving Christ and fell in love with the Kefa Project's Mission to help vulnerable youth in Rwanda through both of those means. She graduated from the University of Portland with a major in Organizational Communications, where she was able to study abroad and satisfy her travel bug. She took her first mission trip to Cuba when she was 23 and made it to Rwanda last Christmas, with the hopes of going back next year. She currently works as a Footwear Product Director at Nike, where she is constantly surrounded by her love of sport and the opportunity to use her passport.

Rodney Alexander

Vice President

Rodney Alexander Jr is the loving husband to LyTonya and an amazing father to two beautiful girls. Rodney is a college graduate from UNC-CH with a B.A. in Exercise and Sport Science and Psychology double major. He also received a Masters of Arts in Ministry with Concentration in International Biblical Community Development from John Brown University and Kanakuk Institute and has a certificate from Duke University in Nonprofit Management. Along with his service on the board, his ministry includes serving as Children's and Youth Pastor for his local church and a member of the church's teaching team. Rodney is passionate about health and wellness and competes as a USA Powerlifting athlete.

Lydia Butner

Board Member

Lydia holds an MA in Mental Health Counseling from Trinity International University, and is a Licensed Professional Counselor at Sterling College. She lives in Sterling with her husband and three little kids.

Ian Hawley

Board Treasurer

Ian Hawley came on a trip with us in 2013 and has been a big part of what we are doing since! He currently resides in Portland, OR where he works for Intel.

Nadia Philip

Board Member

Jeremy Clark

Board Member

Jeremy grew up playing soccer in Eastern NC before moving to Chapel Hill and beginning a career in video production. It was at UNC that he met, Kefa Founder, Brian, and learned about the Kefa Project. Jeremy volunteered with Kefa for a number of years, and was able to travel to Rwanda in 2013 with a group of others to teach filmmaking. Since then Jeremy has continued to support the film students remotely, and works with Brian on fundraising, live events, web development, and other aspects of Kefa. He currently lives in Durham, NC


If you have questions about how we are run, please contact us through our contact form.