If you walk down Victoria maidan between 8 and 10 in the morning any day this week you’ll happen to see close to 600 children, arranged in different groups with a dedicated coach in each cluster either warming up or cheering a group already playing. (Umm, so what’s the big deal?)
Here comes the interesting part! What will they be playing? Football? Cricket? Hockey? Heck is it Kabbaddi? Nope, move over all that the kids will all be blissfully enjoying a game of Rugby, yep, you read that right!
Say ‘Hello’ to Khelo Rugby, an offshoot of Jungle Crows Foundation, a trust with the mission of providing social development to children and young people as they grow and develop with the help of sports.
What is Khelo Rugby?
Khelo Rugby provides opportunities to children from socially underprivileged communities to take part in organized sporting activities. They give children the chance to play and learn together in a safe and coach-controlled environment and operate in communities where there are few if any activities available for children.
How do they do it?
Khelo uses non-contact tag rugby to do this and began in Kolkata where today 12 communities benefit from weekly coaching.
Paul Walsh, Founder, Jungle Crows
Sports and games is the simplest way to communicate. There is no other better way to be friendly with a bunch of kids than to throw a ball at them and start playing.
A student who had joined the program back in 2007 is today a coach for the newer kids
As all the kids are having their winter vacations now, it is better to wake up early and enjoy a game to beat the chill
Chef Shaun Kenworthy
The whole movement started with us guys playing around on the field around 11 years ago and today we have close to 800 kids coming together every morning to play this sport.