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Rural Development Trust sets up Special Olympic state body

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Rural Development Trust sets up Special Olympic state body

The exemplary work of Rural Development Trust has been recognised by Special Olympics Bharat (India) which has set up the Andhra Pradesh state body in partnership with RDT.

Rural Development Trust (RDT) has begun to pen down another chapter in its books for the promotion of inclusive sport. This chapter is about the setup of Special Olympics Bharat Andhra Pradesh (SOBAP), by registering the Indian Special Olympics Federation in Anantapur and organising its first ever district level games.

District level athletics and floorball games were organised to commemorate the registration of the SOBAP. The games were organised at the RDT High School for Inclusive Education. A total of 130 children participated in the games, with 105 children participating in athletics while 25 children played a modified version of floorball in a relatively smaller space, and without snow or ice, as normally is the case.

Being associated with RDT since 2007, Special Olympics Bharat (SOB) has recognised that RDT is one of the few organisations in India wholeheartedly dedicated to the development of special athletes, both on and off the pitch.

Its intricately detailed and dedicated grassroots structure place RDT in a strong position to become the hub of inclusive sports, particularly in Andhra Pradesh (AP), if not in India.

C. Rajasekhar, SOB AP area director, said, “We have a deepened faith in RDT and its working, which is why we chose Anantapur to setup the SOBAP. Even our player representation from AP has made us feel RDT’s strong presence and its interest in sports for development. Over the past two Special Olympics World games, 19 out of 23 athletes have come from RDT”.

RDT has continually focussed on developing a strong grassroot level foundation on which the future can be paved. RDT’s programme maintains the focus on SOB’s Long Term Development Plan, recognising and initiating the process of bringing sport to the differently abled through its schools. The programme starts with developing relations and educating the children’s families, so that they themselves begin to accept these children.

RDT’s next step is to support these children with basic education in one of their many schools, and also teaching them basic life skills like reading, financial literacy and various skills training. This is where these children begin to holistically develop and learn to trust themselves to be far greater than what they have been taught to think of themselves.

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During their time in school, RDT identifies them through its detailed talent ID programme and develops them further as sportspersons. They are nurtured and developed with the exact same care, diet, support and training that ordinary children their age receive, not to mention dedicated training for their respective sports by RDT’s highly qualified and extremely dedicated coaches and volunteers.

Narendra, a floorball athlete who also learns football and roller-skating says, “I play floorball because I like the game, I have a chance to win medals and I feel proud because my friends who are like my family, make me feel very special and famous”.

These children are differently abled but are at par if not better than abled bodied athletes; all they need is a little support. If these athletes get even a fraction of the support our able bodied athletes get, they can outperform them. All we need is for you to open your heart and accept these children,” said Rajasekhar.

[This article has been edited by the Operating Team]

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Article type

News

Author

Maxon Sequeira

Published

Tuesday, April 19, 2016 - 00:00