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Making youngsters into visionaries


Making youngsters into visionaries

A young man who began his association with RDT as a tennis volunteer at the NETS during his first trip to India, returned to Anantapur to work full time with RDT, sharing his passion for the development of underprivileged and marginalised youth.

Life is a constant upward learning curve that we refer to as experience. Rural Development Trust’s (RDT) Anantapur Sports Academy (ASA) never fails at constantly fuelling the fire of passionate sports enthusiasts and professionals with such experiences, which they heartfully cherish all their lives. One such experience comes from the tennis courts of the Nadal Education and Tennis School (NETS) located at RDT’s Anantapur Sports Village (ASV).

Xisco Mercadal Pons arrived in Anantapur as a 23 year old with Degrees in Physical Education & Sports Sciences from Mao, Minorca in Spain, wanting to spend a month working as a Tennis Volunteer at RDT to utilise his time constructively and gain some work experience to return to Spain and coach youngsters. He saw India as a very different ball game from his native Spain. But he learnt to appreciate India with its distinct food, language and its multi-cultural existence. More importantly it was a decision that would change his outlook about coaching and what he wanted to achieve in life.

As a volunteer, Xisco trained both children and staff in the technical knowledge of tennis – coaching children and training coaches. He shared his thoughts about his experience: “My best experience while in Anantapur was working with the Indian underprivileged children, who are always motivated & full of energy, giving me my best feedback of their innocent smiling faces lit with enthusiasm to learn whatever they are taught, keeping me very motivated during my time as a volunteer”.

After volunteering for RDT, Xisco moved back to Spain, where he took on the role of a full time coach and tennis coordinator at the Real Club Tennis de Barcelona (RCTB). But he was not as content with his role in Spain as he was while working with RDT. So, after about two years of coaching in Barcelona, he decided he loved working with RDT and returned to Anantapur, where RDT offered him the role of coordinator at the NETS.

According to Xisco, RDT takes great care of its volunteers and staff, giving them many opportunities to touch the lives of the underprivileged in their own unique way. It is with this freedom that Xisco implemented many engaging activities that have given the children at the NETS the opportunity to learn and develop as individuals.

Xisco adds that his initial intention was more selfish - to travel to a new country and gain work experience. But, RDT’s work prompted in him the feeling of a higher motive - to touch the lives of the underprivileged and help them to develop through sport, something that has given him an immense sense of empathy and self-satisfaction.

[This article has been edited by the Operating Team]


Article type



Maxon Sequeira


Thursday, March 17, 2016 - 23:00