31_india

National partner profile: India

Participants

Their main target are children and young men and women living in slums, including those squatting on government land, those displaced because of natural disasters, and children of sex workers.

Locations

Nationwide

Slum Soccer Krida Vikas Sanstha Nagpur

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Slum Soccer Krida Vikas Sanstha Nagpur aim to reach underprivileged people using football as a tool for social empowerment. They operate all over India, and engage several hundred children and young adults every day.
Slum Soccer India promote development through the medium of football on a daily basis. Providing socially neglected people with a chance to play football not only enhances their fitness, but also encourages skills and values like team-building, self-esteem, friendship, self-confidence, and creativity. Organized sessions with trained coaches are conducted on a regular basis, reaching as many as 700 children every day.

Slum Soccer India runs a nationwide football contest annually, with participation from seven different states every year. The tournament serves as a platform for showcasing young talents and enables Slum Soccer India to pick the squad that will represent the country at that year’s Homeless World Cup. Slum Soccer India takes care of the travel and accommodation charges of all the participants and their coaches.

The brand ambassador of their 2012 Slum Soccer national tournament was Baichung Bhutia, one of the best Indian footballers also known as “Sikkimese Sniper” because of his shooting skills, who currently plays as a striker for East Bengal.

Player profiles & Stories

Mission statement

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Slum Soccer Krida Vikas Sanstha Nagpur exists to foster sustainable development within otherwise marginalised populations of India. Slum Soccer India aim to provide long-term solutions to combat rife homelessness and improve living standards within underprivileged areas. Their approaches are centred on building self-sufficient communities. The game of football is the means to that end.

Football is unique and the perfect vehicle that transcends race, religion, language, and gender to bring about a change in the lives of people.

Goals for the future

Education

To develop participants’ skills to enable them to find employment and provide a well-rounded experience for them, as well as to empower interested volunteers by placing them in departments where they can better develop their skills

Capacity Expansion

To realise the 20-20-20 project – to grow to 20,000 participants in 20 Indian states by 2020

Sustainability

To develop a conventional corporate structure and to increase their reach by at least 30% by further building on the Corporate Social Responsibility implementation partner model, instead of remaining a grant-seeking organization

Additional information

Partner since

2007

Football Activities

Six weekly training sessions per centre, tournaments, and a youth leadership programme

Team selection

The team is selected through the national tournament attended by 16 teams from all over India; 30 players are shortlisted according to attitude and commitment, out of which 16 – one men’s and one women’s team – are selected to represent India.

Non-football services

Slum Soccer India seeks to impart life skills through the use of drama, art, and music workshops. They teach IT skills, often employ former players as coaches, and help place participants in jobs with partner organisations across the country.

Participants challenges

Sexual and domestic abuse, unemployment, substance abuse, malnutrition, mental health issues, and a cycle of disengagement from the education sector

Organisation challenges

Football is seen as recreational and not yet taken seriously as a development tool in India. Female players have to face negative stereotypes and are often discouraged from playing and pressured into marriage by their families. This has been improving since 2010, when India took their first women’s team to the Homeless World Cup and won the Fair Play award, which generated a lot of positive press.

Country challenges

India is the second most populous nation in the world (with more than 1.2 billion people) and is home to 63% of all slum dwellers in South Asia (UN Habitat, 2006). Its rapidly rising population is adding to the existing problems of poverty, homelessness, and unemployment (NPTEL, 2013).

Homlessness definition

NGO Slum Dogs define a homeless person as: “an individual who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate night-time residence; and an individual who has a primary night-time residence that is 1) a publicly supervised or privately operated shelter designed to provide temporary living accommodations (including welfare hotels, congregate shelters, and transitional housing for the mentally ill); 2) an institution that provides a temporary residence for individuals intended to be institutionalized; or 3) a public or private place not designed for, or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings.”

Homelessness Statistics

India is estimated to be the home to 78 million homeless people, including 11 million street children (Business Standard, 2013; Slum Dogs). According to the 2011 census, there were 28% less homeless people from rural areas and 20% less homeless people living in the cities as compared to 2001 (Dr. Kumuda, 2014).

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