Help Akanksha represent India at the Football Homeless World Cup

Akanksha Shelare, a 19 year-old girl from Bokhara in Nagpur district, has spent her childhood in extreme poverty. Battling beatings from an alcoholic father, eventually witnessing her father's addiction-ridden demise, and supporting three sisters in a town engulfed in patriarchal mindset. Today, she has the chance to go to the Football Homeless World Cup in Glasgow as a member of the Indian women's team.

About Slum Soccer:
Slum Soccer is a multiple award winning Sport4Development organization that uses football as a tool for the social upliftment of downtrodden demographics and at-risk youth. We work with recovering drug addicts and alcoholics, slum dwellers, street children, juvenile delinquents, and children of commercial sex workers. With more than 8000 at-risk youth enrolled in 37 centers across India, Slum Soccer has gone from strength to strength in the last 15 years.

About Akanksha:
Akanksha is one of the stars of our women's team. She has bravely faced blow after blow dealt by fate during her childhood. Born to an alcoholic father in a village infamous for its addiction to the bottle, she witnessed her father's losing battle to addiction that culminated in his demise. One of four sisters, she has fought against the policing of relatives, the restrictions of her parochial village, and conventions of society to get where she is today.

Four years ago, she was one of the first female participants in our Slum Soccer football camps. Football acted as both a means of escape from her bleak situation and a means of expression of her talents and dreams. She has grown inexorably in confidence over the past four years and now acts as a shining beacon of inspiration for her sisters and other girls in the village. Her mother, once over-protective of her daughters to the point of suffocation, now beams with pride when she realizes that Akanksha is getting a chance to represent her country in an international tournament.

Your contributions will go towards funding Akanksha's tickets and visa for next month's Homeless World Cup in Glasgow, Scotland. We would be very grateful for any show of support, as we all help this strong teenage girl render a hitherto black-and-white life in resplendent color.

About the Homeless World Cup:
Founded by Mel Young and Harald Schmied in 2001, the Homeless World Cup is an annual football tournament that advocates for a global solution to homelessness.  With partners in more than 70 countries, the competition touches the lives of 100,000 homeless people every year through experience sharing and an infusion of respect and importance that their lives have lacked so far.

Ask for an update
8th August 2017
Dear Supporters, 

Thank you so much for helping us through the process! The kids are getting their Visas soon. Wish them all the best!
21st September 2016
Dear Supporters, 

Thanks to your contributions and support, Slum Soccer was able to raise the entire amount of funds required to to facilitate Akanksha as well as Team India's travel to the Homeless World Cup.

In the 2016 Homeless World Cup (HWC), 44 men's teams and 14 women's teams participated. The format and rules are those of standard international football tournaments, with some tweaks. For example, players can participate in only one HWC, so that we can maximize the number of people from each country that participate over time. For those interested, detailed rules can be found here:  
Team India's performance and results were very encouraging this year. The men's team finished in 24th place, the first time they have finished in the top 30 since India started participating in the HWC over 10 years ago. The women's team finished 7th, continuing their strong performance from last year's competition. 

It was an amazing, life-changing experience for Akanksha. She was extremely proud of representing the country. New experiences of meeting people from around the world and the sheer joy of playing football on a global stage have left a great impact on her. Her confidence, contextual awareness, and maturity have improved after this experience, and she's only getting started! 

This was the first time Akanksha got the opportunity to travel out of the country. She got to meet people from various cultures who speak different languages. She says, “My sisters and mother are very proud of the fact that I represented the country in the World Cup. My mother keeps sharing my experiences with everyone who listens to her.” Akanksha made new friends from various corners of our country as well as the globe. 

Akanksha is pursuing B. Sc from Dr. Ambedkar College, Nagpur currently. She is in the first year now. She is a part of the university team and a inter-collegiate tournament is currently in progress. She will also attend trials for district-level football team selection. She says, “I will focus on both studies and football for now. For my long-term career, I will choose whatever I am better at after I complete my graduation”. 

For more photos of the HWC, you can visit this link: 

Here is a video about the Homeless World Cup and Team India's rising popularity from last year: 
raised of Rs.100,000 goal

34 Supporters

Beneficiary: Slum Soccer info_outline
80G tax benefits for INR donations

Supporters (34)

Nirmal donated Rs.1,500
12 months ago
deepali donated Rs.2,500
almost 2 years ago
Shekar donated Rs.2,500
almost 2 years ago

All the Best Champ

Sanjaykumar donated Rs.2,500
almost 2 years ago

I would like to see Akanksha get her dream

Shreya donated Rs.1,000
almost 2 years ago
Anonymous donated US $25
almost 2 years ago

Good Luck!!!