Singngat is a small village in the conflict affected area of Manipur. Football is a popular pastime in Singnat but it is very much a boy’s game, roughing it out on the field to win.
Nilay, one of our many peer-leader coaches, made a trip to Singngat. Our objective was to introduce Ultimate as part of the educational curriculum set by Sunbird. Nilay spent two weeks introducing Ultimate in 3 schools. He also identified and mentored a peer leader, Boigin Haokip, who would continue to lead practice sessions. In a short span of time, children were so gripped by the sport that despite a lack of proper gear, they were not willing to miss out on practice sessions. This was also followed by a lot of stories of good spirit and exemplary behaviour on the field influenced by the ethos of the sport. After 2.5 months, we went back to Singngat and organized a tournament kicking off the second phase of interventions. The tournament was a success. The village chief, impressed by the development, pledged more support to use Ultimate as a development platform.
The work continues, most recently Boigin travelled to Delhi and spent 2 weeks, getting first hand training in coaching in communities along with our very own youth coaches. On Boigin’s return, he started training at a 4th school; today there are over 80 children actively participating in the program. Similar to Nilay story with Sunbird trust in Singngat in Manipur, our 16 other peer leaders have partnered with 25 different NGO’s/Schools/Communities multiplying our reach to over 1200 children across India.