I thought about how I could try to change this. I thought about what made me who I am today. The answer was very simple- sports. Students can embody and showcase the values of Grit, Hardwork and Respect through sports. They can be made aware of their strengths, weaknesses and exposed to the world outside their community via sports.
Thus, to polish this inherent talent and to give it a new dimension of competitive spirit is why we have-THE RIGHT PITCH-Season 3. The Right Pitch is a cricket tournament with league matches being played in a proper cricket field with quality equipments, leading to quarters, semis and finals for low-income schools across Mumbai.
The students will be given training for 3 months where there will be professional coaches, proper cricket jersey, shoes and equipments. The training sessions will not only focus on improving cricket skills, but also on helping children to imbibe life skills and values.
Since, the tournament has mixed gender teams, it empowered the girls a lot. Last year one of my girls, Shofiya was the captain and another one, Taskin opened the batting.
Just to give you an example of how it promoted values and mindsets, access and exposure in my class:-
I received a text from one of my students Kasim after a practice session last year which goes like this- "Hi Sir, please can you give me feedback on my batting and bowling. Strengths and weakness. What I have to learn and what I'm good at. How is my captaincy? Am I good enough to come in the final playing team? Please tell me all this very clearly."
Also values like team-work, hard-work, grit, respect and self-control got re-iterated again and again through the entire duration of training and the tournament.