Three players from the Indian junior national teams are participating in the ‘eGoal – Virtual Social Responsibility Programme’ organized by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) in partnership with Aurora, which kicked off on Monday, October 5 and consists of a total of nine sessions conducted over three weeks – concluding on October 23.
The first session conducted was titled ‘Sport and the Sustainable Development Goals’ and India U-17 women’s national team midfielder Aveka Singh, who is one of the participants, termed it as ‘highly informative’.
“In the opening session, we learned about sustainable development and how we can use sports to empower people and create a difference in their lives. It was really nice to be able to learn how sports can help change lives both on and off the field. It was highly informative and I am eagerly looking forward to the next sessions going forward together,” Aveka said.
The programme is the first-of-its-kind in world football, engaging young elite players in development education with the objective of instilling both an understanding of and commitment to social responsibility in football across Asia. Its curriculum includes topics such as Philanthropy in Football, Inclusivity & Diversity and Personal Growth & Goal Setting – which will be covered in the coming sessions.
The first workshop featured the participating players being divided into smaller groups, where they discussed various topics and according to U-17 women’s national team forward Sai Sankhe, the list of topics being covered is ‘really interesting’.
She said, “I had lots of fun and the educator really made us understand the topic well. There were 3-4 group discussions, where we first introduced ourselves and discussed how sports can be used for development. The upcoming topics look really interesting and I am excited about the upcoming sessions, especially the one on mental health and well-being.”
The programme features participants from 12 countries across Central and South Asia, and India U-16 men’s national team defender Halen Nongtdu stated that the opportunity is a great opportunity to ‘broaden one’s horizons’.
“It is such an awesome opportunity for us and it was very nice to meet and talk with players from different nations. We spoke about why sports are important for society and I am very much looking forward to the next workshops. I am thankful to the AIFF and the organizers for providing us such a chance to learn and broaden our horizons,” he said.