Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Yellowave's Indian Summer

Today we are going to hand over to a guest blogger - Katie Mintram, Director of the Nivea Sun Yellowave Beach Sports Centre to tell us about a fantastic inititive they have been involved with called Youthivate...

We’re contacted almost weekly by charities requesting money or support for their projects but unfortunately we can’t support them all as we put most of our efforts in to our own chosen charity ‘Passing It On’, who run the Super Heroes run on Brighton seafront.

However, back in August we were approached by a charity called Youthivate. Their project just seemed so real that it grabbed my attention. It was just two young women who were going out to some of the poorest areas in India to help youngsters play sport.

All they wanted were some balls so that kids could play volleyball. So we dug out a load of equipment including balls, a net, Yellowave T’shirts, hoodies, caps, score boards and a ball bag.

Just three weeks later we could see how the equipment was getting used. Lara and Hayley from Youthivate flew into Delhi and straight away they got to work. We were sent a simple photo of a street kid in Delhi playing with a Yellowave ball. It was so touching to see. These kids have such tough lives. Knocking a ball about was such a simple pleasure and a moments release from their daily deprived situation.

Lara and Hayley then travelled out to Tamil Nadu in Southern India. This tribal community suffer from severe poverty and don’t get to play much sport at all. In fact the girls in the school had NEVER had the opportunity. Youthivate’s aim was to remove some of these barriers and get the local children involved in sport, to help them improve their health and well being.

Straight away you could see what a benefit the equipment had been and most importantly how brilliant Lara and Hayley were with the kids. They clearly captivated the children’s attention. With just a few lessons they were able to play a mini tournament. The whole school came out to watch and cheer for their friends. In the final ‘The Green Stars’ took the first two sets and were crowned the champions!

What I loved about this project was that it was so instant and so simple – two enthusiastic women, 250 kids, a net and a few balls and so much positivity had come from it. Youthivate are continuing their work by travelling to other deprived areas to deliver all sorts of sport. Anyone who wants to check out their work can follow them at: www.youthivate.wordpress.com and check out the video here:


Wendy Farrell said...

Hi Guys at Yellowave!

Just wanted to THANK YOU for supporting Lara & Hayley of Youthivate and their AWESOME program!

I had the pleasure of meeting them while working in Kadalakolly India on a bio gas plant project and we were able to spend some time together at the school featured in their video and had an AWESOME time with the kids! I even got a crash course in "Cricket 101" as the game has always baffled me! :D

WELL DONE for supporting people out there MAKING a DIFFERENCE!

Wendy Farrell
Pay It Forward Project

Mel Dunn said...

As someone who has worked in PE and Sport Development for over 10 years, it is evident that the Youthivate project has had an amazing impact on the lives of the young people involved.

Having followed their blog, it has almost been uncomprehendable to me to see young girls play with a ball for the first time. In the UK we strive for every young person to access 2hrs of high quality PE, but the schools that Youthivate have engaged with do not have sport on the curriculum at all. The pupils are not encouraged to 'play', which is evident from the way the girls' replicate lesson activity rather than creating their own games.

Youthivate was set up by two individuals who used their own passion and expertise, to make a profound difference to deprived individuals and a community as a whole. This has been a totally selfless project and Youthivate deserves high recognition for what they have achieved.

Lara, who previously worked in giving young people a voice for West Sussex County Council, has done an amazing job in finding partners to support the project with getting equipment out to India. Her attention to detail and innovative thinking has truly created something extraordinary!

Hayley, who previously worked for the YMCA in Hove, has been their throughout helping fundraise and bringing her creativity to the project. Her ability to work in an inclusive manner has helped everyone be involved in physical activity.

Youthivate is testament to the use of sport as a vehicle for social change and engagement, whilst improving health and well-being. Just look at the smiles - that's the only reward you ever look at when delivering youth targeted projects.

Amazing! Well done ladies and to all partners involved!