We have kick started our core programmes for this year and there is excitement all around; and it is raining highlights. Special thanks to each one of you for being a tremendous support in helping us continue to empower and transform lives of young people from vulnerable backgrounds.
With this update we would want to share with you story of Shekar (name changed), who is part of Dream Life Skills through Sports Program.
Meet Shekar, a 16-year-old, who has been part of our Life skills through Football Programme since last 2 years. His father is a driver and his mother works as a domestic help. His hobbies include playing football and listening to music.
The Challenge: Shekar was very shy in the beginning, not speaking with anyone. His parents are very supportive of him and want him to get involved in activities at school but he has never been able to. During the first few sessions at the Life Skills through Football programme, Shekar would never try new skills when the facilitator asked him to. Shekar explained that he was too afraid to make a mistake because he thought people would laugh at him. He narrated an incident from his life about when he was in the 8th grade, he was called on to answer a question, which he got wrong, and the entire class laughed at him. From that day onwards, he does his work properly on paper but is too afraid to speak in front of other students.
In one session, a volunteer came to join the young people. The volunteer noticed Shekar’s shy behaviour and proceeded to support him during the match. The volunteer told him how good he was in the match in terms of his efforts and scoring a goal. Shekar had never been acknowledged like that and it gave him a bit of confidence. The volunteer told him his own personal story about how he used to be shy but as he grew older, he began to learn more and obtain more skills to become an engineer. The volunteer explained that everyone goes through times of doubt and he shouldn’t be discouraged by his peers.
After this interaction with the volunteer, the facilitator noticed Shekar communicating and participating more actively during sessions.
The Change: Once, when the facilitator was revisiting the team agreements (agreements are made by children themselves with the help of facilitator before start of the session every year which they follow during the sessions such as; being on time, no using bad language, etc. ), Shekar was first to raise his hand to explain the agreements. During the warm ups, Shekar started speaking and participating actively. The facilitator asked them to run five rounds around the grounds and Shekar raised his hand to suggest six rounds instead. His friends who lived near the grounds also participated in the sessions but did not attend regularly. Shekar decided to collect them before the sessions to ensure their attendance for that day’s session. Since he realized the importance of teamwork, Shekar would gather his friends to make sure everyone was accountable and part of the team.
When the facilitator spoke with Shekar’s teacher, she told him that he has started participating in school activities. He recently participated in a quiz competition and made it to the semi-finals. His teacher praised him for his academic efforts. Shekar’s parents are very happy that he has started taking an active part and has realized that he can achieve his goals. He discovered that he has the academic and extracurricular abilities and felt a renewed sense of confidence.
The Dream Power: Shekar confidently shares, “I like the activities including the fun games and playing as a team. I want to continue this programme next year in the tenth standard. I have the confidence to take part in all of the activities in the programme. My dream is to be a football player.”
Dream Life Skills programme is aimed to help young men like Shekar find their inner strength and confidence through powerful experiences, consistent messaging and role-modelling.
Organization and Programme Updates and Highlights (April 2013 – July 2013):
We look forward to your continued support and enduring relationship!
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