Mrs Nita Ambani, Member, International Olympic Committee and Chairperson Reliance Foundation today kicked off one of the most ambitious multi-discipline pan India school and college sports programmes under the banner of Reliance Foundation Youth Sports.
Joining Mrs. Nita Ambani on the occasion was Ranbir Kapoor, an avid sports follower, an owner of Mumbai City FC and member of the Reliance Foundation Youth Sports Advisory Board.
Reliance Foundation Youth Sports is poised to professionalise school and college sports competitions with a unified approach towards creating an eco-system to encourage, support and define a career path in sports for today’s youth.
Calling for a need of integrated sports support system in our education, Mrs Nita Ambani said, “Reliance Foundation Youth Sports was set up with the aim to propel India’s growth towards a multi- sports nation through robust school and college level initiatives.
“Reliance Foundation will also introduce the ‘Student Athlete’ program at early student life to scout, nurture, guide and create a viable career path for young sportspeople across the country in all discipline of sports.”
For first year, Reliance Foundation School Sports will witness a fierce football competition among 2000 schools and colleges institutes from eight cities fielding 2200 teams in four categories i.e. Junior Boys, Senior Boys, Senior Girls and College Boys. The competitions will have pre-qualifying rounds, followed by main draws respectively in Mumbai, Delhi, Guwahati, Kochi, Goa, Chennai, Pune and Kolkata. City winners in each category would qualify to play for the national honours.
As part of Mumbai leg of launch today, HR College played against Wilson College in the Senior Girls category. Over the next three months, Mumbai and its suburbs will see over 500 institutes fielding over 600 teams will play football at various grounds. Subsequently, the qualifying rounds of the rest of cities will also commence in the coming days.
Starting from next year, Reliance Foundation Youth Sports will double the participatory city numbers from 8 to 16, and progressively to 50 plus cities and far flung towns in India by the fifth year (2020). School and Colleges across country will have options to participate in multi-discipline sports such as Football, Basketball, Athletics, Badminton, Volleyball etc. at a National level through Reliance Foundation Youth Sports.
Reliance Foundation Youth Sports will produce video footage of the competitions, making the scouting process for raw talent a much easier task across the country. Furthermore the archive video footage would assist in technical analyses, identifying shortcomings and improvise action for young athletes. For first year of football competitions, the Youth Sports programme is expected to create 7000 hours of video content over the next four months of action, which will be available on www.rfyouthsports.com
Reliance Foundation Youth Sports has set up an elite six member Advisory Board consisting of leading sports personalities and educationalists including Nita Ambani, Sachin Tendulkar, Leander Paes, Saina Nehwal, Prof. Dipak Jain and Ranbir Kapoor.