Bengaluru: Bridges of Sports, a non- profit enterprise, is trying to provide an opportunity for children to train, excel and have a career in sports.
Started early this year by Nitish Chiniwar, 26, from the city, the organisation has already reached out to 800 children from 16 schools in rural Karnataka in a period of five months. Its aim? To find an Olympic level athlete from amongst the underserved communities of the state.
And to realise its goal it currently runs a two- year fellowship programme for local athletes, providing them basic training and connecting them to bigger sport institutes like Olympics Gold Sports Foundation and Sports Authority of India. .
"The talent is abundant, but the problem is there aren't even the basic requirements like equipment and training in the rural areas of the country. When I came back from completing my degree in the UK last August I saw this gap and I really wanted to fill it," explains Nitish. A motor sports engineer, he says like motor sports every other sport in India needs a push, especially in the rural areas.
After a year- and -a -half of extensive research he realized there was no proper equipment or coaches to train sportsmen for taluk or state level tournaments.
"So we decided to focus on this basic level because to create a change, a positive shift really needed to happen here," he adds.
Come Monday and Bridges will host a football tour for children from the Vikaspuri Slums of Delhi. "We are hosting a 10- day football tour in the city for children to create awareness about the possibilities of sports in social and economic development. They will be playing with HAL, Bangalore Youth Football Academy and possibly even BFC," he says.