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Khel Vikas celebrates International Day of Sport for Development and Peace


Khel Vikas celebrates International Day of Sport for Development and Peace

Using a volleyball exhibition, the Khel Vikas Project promoted gender equality and health education to a range of participants at the Kankia Academy and local communities.

To celebrate International Day of Sport for Development and Peace, Pro Sport Development planned a volleyball exhibition at Gram Vikas Kankia Academy in Odisha, India. Such a day was ideal for promoting the girls’ volleyball programme as well as emphasising that an active lifestyle is vital to improving all round fitness and battling non-communicable diseases.

A growing confidence
Females have rarely participated in a sport that is so male dominated within the poor and largely tribal state of Odisha. It is a massive step forward to see girls enjoy playing volleyball but up until now, the team have been relegated to a second patch of land with the net suspended between a tree and a wooden post.

Playing an intra-squad game supported by coaches and teachers, the girls played with higher grade equipment for the first time. Whilst nervous, a great level of development and enthusiasm was shown as they played in front of nearly 100 people. The confidence of the team grew throughout the match and with the vaunted senior boys’ team, among others, encouraging, supporting and applauding the girls, a fantastic atmosphere ensued that only raised the quality of the game. By taking ownership of their warm-ups and discussing how exercise and continued participation has wide ranging benefits relating to maternal health, reduced medical costs, and improved employability, it is hoped that the girls have retained some vital lessons.

Encouraging greater participation
The girls were encouraged to watch other games including one between Khel Vikas staff and the senior boys from the school. Primarily to view a higher standard that they themselves can relate and aspire to but also to see that sport can be a lifelong passion and does not need to be abandoned when approaching grade nine in school.

Coach, Matt Hobson, said that he was “delighted with the experience that the girls had. They have grown in confidence today and hopefully this will encourage more girls to play, as well as inspiring this team to greater things now they are aware of their potential. To play in a low pressure environment with the support of staff and students alike has helped to show how enjoyable team sports can be and they are excited to repeat the experience.”

Pro Sport Development were delighted with the event and hope that it will encourage more females to partake in Khel Vikas volleyball activities. These include community participation, coaching courses or future camps and team events at the four schools participating in the project.

[This article has been edited by the Operating Team.]


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David Morton


Thursday, April 10, 2014 - 23:00