Vol 39 - Issue 3

Sports teaches you about life, we use sports to empower our girls!

It is believed, Sports teaches you character, it teaches you to play by the rules, it teaches you to know what it feels like to win and lose-it teaches you about life. And this is why our Sports programme in partnership with Australian Aid is a land-mark initiative in empowering our girls in the 5 Gender-Critical Districts of Haryana’s Beti Bachao Beti Padhao programme.

In our first phase of the programme, 2017-2018,  we had touched over 500 girls through a variety of sports like Volleyball in Gugaon and Hockey in Jhajjar.

Minakshi Saini , our volleyball coach from Gurugram added,“The poor girls who study in government schools can’t reach the stadium,  so I go to them and give them training. It’s important for girls to come into sports so that they are not dependent on anyone. I have around 125 girls taking training with me”

The WRB campaigns strive to achieve 33% reservation and increase female representation in political spaces. We recently held state level consultations in Chennai, Mumbai and Kolkata.

These state-level meetings welcomed all participants to discuss the necessity and impact of the Women’s Reservation Bill. The main objective was to highlight that the right to vote does not equate with equal representation and though India has allowed women the right to vote since independence, but, even today the percentage of women representatives is still extremely low.

The Chennai Consultation – was held on 20th July, 2019 at Loyola College organized and facilitated by Global Concerns India, Shakti-Political Power to Women and Centre for Social Research. This consultation did not just invite speakers but also had a unique public opinion forum where everyone could share their views about the Women’s Reservation Bill and the need to pass it. Dr. Ranjana Kumari, who has been spearheading the cause of women in politics for decades, opined “The Women’s Reservation Bill has a long and sordid history. When we say a bill is tabled. There is usually no physical document that is presented- however, in this case, there was a document, and it was torn multiple times by the very parties that claim to stand for social justice.”
The Maharasthra Consultation – was held on 27th August, 2019 at SNDT Arts College, Churchgate with association with Centre for Social Research, Women Power Connect and Mahila Rajsatta Andolam (MRA). The conference was a major effort to facilitate women’s participation as well as representation in the political arena in line with the Reservation Bill.

The Kolkata consultation – was held on 27th September, 2019 in collaboration with Jabala Action Research Organization and National Alliance of Women. There were 52 participants who elaborated on how this is the longest pending Bill in the history of India and it is not a demand but the constitutional right of women which has been blocked by the patriarchal mindset of our society.

All these consultations ended with gathering huge support for this Bill. We have also been collecting signatures for the campaign as part of WRB. The number has gone up to 50,000 signatures and we continue to receive more every day.

Priya, a volleyball player from Gurugram  emphatically shared, “People should give equal rights and respect to girls, the way they do for boys. Our country’s girls are already ahead in education and now they have proven themselves in sports as well. Players like Geeta Phogat, Sakshi Malik, P.V.Sindhu are medalists at the international level. “

We are also making efforts to build greater advocacy with district level authorities. The CSR team also reached out to the District Sports and Youth Officers (DS&YO), coaches, physical education instructors and school principals in Kurukshetra, Ambala, Gurugram and Jhajjar.

Activities in pipeline:

  1. An enrollment drive at Jhajjar
  2. District level Volleyball match in the districts of Dighal and Mahendragarh
  3. Zonal competition between three of our districts.

Our plan for the future is to be able to provide nutrition, sports kits and shoes for 400 girls for our #SportsForGirls initiative in 5 districts of Haryana.

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