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Maidan Summit 2011 - Mandira Srivastava, Isha Foundation


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Ms Mandira Srivastava, during her discourse at Maidan Summit 2011, introduced the Isha Foundation and talked about its impact through sport-based programmes. In her presentation, she took the audience through Isha’s activities, and explained how sport can be harnessed to create an inclusive culture that forms the basis for urban peace and global development.

Using case studies and dedicated presentations, she spoke about how sport has been enjoyed with full enthusiasm in the communities that the Isha Foundation works in, and how eventually transformation happened. She made a special mention to Isha’s sport-based work during crisis situations in South India.

Published in: Sports, Spiritual
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Maidan Summit 2011 - Mandira Srivastava, Isha Foundation

  1. 1. Sports for Social Inclusion
  2. 2. Isha Foundation •an international, non-religious, not-for-profit public service organization, •dedicated to nurture and help every being attain its ultimate potential through individual transformation by addressing all aspects of human wellbeing . •Isha activities are designed to create an inclusive culture that is the basis of global peace and development. •This integral approach has gained worldwide recognition –reflected in its Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations.
  3. 3. Sports and Community games Vision: We envision a society where people full of joy and enthusiasm become actors in the transformation of their communities. Mission: We teach sports and community games to promote social bonding beyond caste, creed, religion or economic status and to encourage gender equity and leadership attitude within the community Goals:  To establish a network of local motivated trained sport coaches  To introduce health awareness programs and yoga classes including games  To form male and female sport teams and provide them weekly coaching session  To support the happenings of tournaments from village to state level organized by community leaders
  4. 4. Rural Community Challenges • Exclusion of women due to cultural inhibition • Caste barriers within the community • No culture of sport practice • Loss of traditional practice of community games • Addiction of women and children to TV, and addiction of men to card games, alcohol and smoking
  5. 5. Methodology Meeting the village influential people Introducing Games through yoga Programs Organizing sports teams Coaching the teams Inter-Panchayat & district level Tournaments Rural Olympics/ Gramotsav
  6. 6. Strategy Isha Rural Yoga programs (Inner Engineering Program) • rejuvenate the individual and foster trust • raise awareness of a better way of living • Introduction to game practices Sport Coach – in charge for • Weekly coaching of sport practice • Initiate organization of inter village tournaments Volunteer team Leader – in charge for • Continuity of games • Play-ground maintenance and sport equipments
  7. 7. Impacts Individual Level • Improvement in conflict resolution & problem solving skills • Development of leadership skills and attitude Community Level • Increasing receptivity for development programs
  8. 8. Improvement of health and reduction of addictions Mr.Magudesh Aged:40 Thottipalayam
  9. 9. He began drinking alcohol at the age of 16 to forget his burdens. He would consume alcohol and smoke a pack of cigarettes almost every day as the only way to relax the mind. But he knew it was not good for his health. He is an agricultural laborer. All his earnings were spent on alcohol, leaving wife and family with almost nothing. AYUSH-Isha’s Fitness and Yoga team trained Vijayakumar in yoga and volleyball. With regular visits and counseling on de-addiction by the project team, Vijayakumar was encouraged to practice yoga and play volleyball. Mr.Vijayakumar, 26 yr old, Vilaram village, Devanur Panchayat His wife Thayamma, aged 23, now feels happy that her husband doesn’t drink, and goes to work regularly. She thanked the AYUSH-Isha team for transfarming the life of her husband and the family now enjoys their reputation in the village. Improvement in family and social relationships
  10. 10. Enhanced self-esteem and empowerment especially among women Mrs.Kala Aged: 28, Athani, Gobichettipalayam
  11. 11. School Sharing Due to the hilly terrain, no sports and games activities were conducted in the school. When Isha organized games like Kho-Kho and Kabadi. The children developed great enthusiasm in games. Interschool competition were also organized which witness the high spirit of children. The AEO of the area exclaimed that he never expected that their children could portray such enthusiasm and skills in sports and games. Development of individual skills
  12. 12. Fostering united community spirit beyond gender, caste, social and economic differences Mr.Senthilkumar Aged:39 Athani, Gobichettipalayam
  13. 13. Real Inclusion
  14. 14. Achievements since 2003  Villages reached 2,463  Rural Isha Yoga program participants 150,000  Volley ball & throw ball teams 852  Number of players ~ 10,200  District level tournaments 27  State level rural sports festival (Gramotsav) 4  Gramotsav participants ~ 1,200,000
  15. 15. “Wanting to win, at the same time, willing to lose if need be; handling your victory gracefully, handling your failure gracefully are things that sport inculcates into a human being.” -Sadhguru