Youth challenge gender bias through sport
Pro Sport Development (PSD), in partnership with the Society for Participatory Research in Asia (PRIA) and the Martha Farrell Foundation (MFF), conducted a four-day sports workshop with underprivileged youth in Jaipur, Rajasthan, as part of the Kadam Badhate Chalo (KBC) campaign. KBC is a youth-driven campaign, implemented by PRIA and MFF, which motivates young girls and boys to strategise and implement a campaign to address violence against women and gender discrimination, so highly prevalent in Indian society. It also strives to create leaders within these communities to further address these issues.
In its initial phase, the KBC campaign in Jaipur empowered youth to implement a safety audit in their communities, identifying safe and unsafe areas. The sports workshops with these youth were implemented in their own communities, in the areas designated as unsafe. The activities of the workshop, as well as the location, subtly questioned gender stereotypes, especially prevalent in sport in India, and challenged the perceptions of violence in these unsafe areas.
The games and activities conducted within the workshops promoted the qualities of leadership, communication, team work and self-esteem among the participants. Moreover, they made both boys and girls engage in the same activities, a first for many of the youth, and allowed girls to leave their homes in the evenings, a rarity among most households due to persistent issues of female security.
The workshops were conducted from 29 October to 1 November 2015. They covered a total of five wards in Jaipur city, with 215 youth (85 girls and 130 boys) participating in them. Similar camps are envisaged to be conducted in all programme areas of the youth led KBC initiative, the next being in Sonipat, Haryana.
[This article has been edited by the Operating Team]