Goal of Life is one of the Kutumb Foundation’s pioneering initiatives. The programme began in 2002; football was seen as a medium to enable under-privledged youth the chance to play together, combining the development of their talent with the inculcation of a sense of unity of purpose and positive harmony in relationships.
Goal of Life is a ‘Sports Plus’ programme. This means we use football as a way to attract youth; sport is integrated with our educational and life-skills activities. We focus on gender inclusion, a pluralistic agenda, conflict resolution, physical fitness and proper nutrition. This is done using the time tested method of peer-learning. This helps us to internally replicate the programme and promote empowerment and self-efficacy!
The programme started as an annual tournament and has since expanded into twice weekly sessions at our three locations. Our two coaches, Hero and Lalit, come from within the community itself and learned to play football through Goal of Life. Both are accomplished football players in their own right and excellent coaches. They plan the sessions themselves in conjunction with our programme coordinators. Our coaches serve as role models; they are an example of successful young people engaged in socially responsible work within their own communities. In the past year our female participation has grown dramatically and is now approaching 25% female participation.
We also hold an annual football tournament. This past year our tournament featured 108 participants from our three locations with peer-leader trainings and matches spread out through March and April. We focused on gender inclusion (two girls per team, one girl on the field at all times), conflict resolution, pluralism and team strategising. Our tournament serves as a platform for our youth to exhibit their skills and learn and play together. Additionally, the tournament is a good way for our youth to partner with the local community and area corporates.