Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Volunteer Perspective: Emily

Since I began volunteering for the Bank back in February, I have been greatly impressed by the work GOAL is doing for girls in India. Having grown up in an environment in which women have infinite opportunities in life, it is sometimes easy to forget that not all girls around the world are born with the same fate. GOAL, however, is a program that brings adolescent girls in India the tools necessary to live their life with more self confidence and awareness, in hopes that they will then become powerful figures in their community. I am so proud to be apart of an organization that provides education to young women by emphasizing the importance of communication and leadership skills, as well as what it means to be a strong, independent woman within a larger group context. The core skills that are imparted to these girls have proven to be indispensible to both their self growth and social advancement, and it is a project in which I hope to take greater part by volunteering my time in the very near future. The girls of GOAL India are true role models of today!

Friday, April 24, 2009


GOAL has been shortlisted for a Beyond Sport award which will recognise exceptional projects that use sport to drive significant social transformation.

Wish us luck!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Spotlight: Meet Mamta

Mamta is a 21 year old girl who dropped out of school after the 8th grade. Her father runs a general store and her mother is a housewife. Mamta dropped out of school because she had met with an accident and developed a back problem.

Until Mamta became a part of GOAL she spent most of her time doing household work and helping her mother. Mamta had completed her tailoring course from the Prerana centre and during her free time she would take orders for stitching blouses and ‘salwar suits’ for the community women and also earn money from it.

She joined GOAL through Prerana, with the hope that, since she no longer went to a formal school, she could learn new things through this programme. As she started playing netball and attending sessions, her interest took a deep root. She became more confident and developed her communication skills. She attended the sessions regularly and most of the time had many questions relating to the sessions. Since she was older than the other girls and also had a natural command over the group and emerged as a leader.

Recognizing her potential, she was selected to become a ‘GOAL Champion’. Mamta has become very confident and can speak on any platform without hesitation. Reflecting on what she learned in the programme Mamta says:
“In GOAL we were given information about different topics including HIV/AIDS. We now know our body and ways of maintaining hygiene and cleanliness, with in and around us. In fact we learnt about a whole lot of issues, which are important for every girl to know. As girls we were never taught to aspire for anything in life, GOAL opened our minds and encouraged us to make the pathways towards achieving our dreams.”
Mamta now aspires to complete her education and also start her own tailoring centre to teach other girls. GOAL helped her recognize her strength in conducting sessions and she seeks GOAL’s support in exploring the possibility of working in a NGO.

Mamta running a GOAL session in Delhi

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Delhi Train the Trainer

A Note from Kalyani (at left), our National Programme Coordinator for GOAL:

A ‘Training of Trainers’ (TOT) program in netball was organised from 24th – 28th March 2009 to enhance the Netball skills of the girls. The Program was organised under grant from the Australian Sports Outreach Program. Ms/ Maureen Hall, a former international player and member of the International Coaching Committee came in as the trainer for the program from Kingston, Jamaica.

Twenty six girls participated in the program. The GOAL coach from Mumbai and one of the participants too attended the training. The Kerala Netball Association, a very newly formed organisation liaised with GOAL. They are seeking assistance in developing netball in Kerala. GOAL the opportunity for 3 girls from Kerala, to participate in this TOT and learn netball skills.

The TOT sessions had theory as well as sessions on the netball court. Besides enhancing their netball skills, Maureen also focused on developing coaching skills in order to help the participants to take their learning forward to other girls of the community. The TOT was immensely enjoyed by the participants. The girls were proud of the learning and all of them received certificates of achievement.

A few photos:

Monday, April 6, 2009

Spotlight: Meet Jyoti

Jyoti has been part of GOAL for the past two years.

When asked about GOAL, Jyoti (with her ever-smiling eyes) replies: "GOAL is fun, it's freedom, and lots and lots of learning."

Jyoti is part of a very conservative family. She dropped out of school due to poor economic conditions and spent most of her time doing household work. She used to attend the vocational centre run by Prerana and when she heard about GOAL, she joined - Jyoti thought this would be a great opportunity for her to do something different to cooking and cleaning.

Initially, she was very aggressive, using abusive language and fighting with all the other girls at the sessions. However, as time progressed, she got more involved with the programme. The sessions on Communication and Dealing with Peer Pressure helped her gradually calm her behaviour. She started taking the initiative during netball games, understanding well the rules and regulations. She didn't miss sessions and mastered the game quickly - she is now considering becoming a community coach.

After completing GOAL, Jyoti was selected to become a GOAL Champion. She participated in the Train the Trainer workshop and this proved to be a turning point for her. She joined the sessions enthusiastically, and her body language and communication skills improved greatly.

Recognising her potential to be a professional netball player, Jyoti was given the opportunity to participate in the selection camp for the senior national netball tournament. She convinced her parents to allow her to attend the camp where she practiced with senior professional players and performed very well.

The camp also taught her valuable social and communication skills relating to the senior players. She has returned to Aali with a passion to impart netball training and leadership skills to a new batch of girls. She aspires to excel in netball and also wants to resume her school studies.

"Jyoti has truly undergone a lot of change, particularly with her new self confidence.She has not only brought about changes in herself but also change in the outlook of her family towards her GOAL participation, she has gained their trust and confidence.Above all, she is a great netball player." Abidi, Community Coordinator, Prerana