Vatsalyam
 
 

 
'Odi Vilayaadu' - a 14-day Summer Soccer Camp from April 17, 2014
17th of April, 2014

'Vatsalyam', conducted a 14-day Summer Soccer Coaching Camp for the students at the Chennai (Corporation) Higher Secondary School, MGR Nagar playground from the 17th of April, 2014 between 6.30 am & 8.30 am.

A group of 30 students from Chennai High School, Kanniappa Nagar and Chennai Higher Secondary School, MGR Nagar participated in the camp which was handled by seasoned soccer coaches like Mr. Xavier, Mr Bobby Jose, Mr. Amul Raj, and Ms. Ranjini who have won acclaims in national and international soccer and other sporting events. (The last two deserve a special word of thanks and appreciation as they are working as physical training teachers in CHS, Kaniyappa Nagar & CHSS, MGR Nagar respectively.) No less significant was the contribution of Mr. Kannabiran, the teacher at the CHSS, MGR Nagar who was around to guide the students all through the 14-days.

The camp, through lecture demonstrations, familiarized the students with all aspects of the game and made them understand the benefits of sports. It also highlighted how football could inculcate in them qualities like team work, alertness, tolerance, unity, self-confidence and concentration. Further, the demos also focused on how sports could wean them away from television and negative influences during the summer vacation before making them realize the importance of physical activity which has alarmingly dwindled in recent times particularly amongst children from economically disadvantaged sections.

Through initiative, 'Vatsalyam' proposes to identify sporting talents and groom them in the future. Soccer teams will be created at the above schools and kept engaged all through the year in interschool tournaments at the local and district level. Plans are afoot to give a fillip to other games like cricket, basketball and kabbadi over a period of time depending upon the response from the students.

Here are some snapshots of the event:

  • Some 30 students from Chennai (Corporation) Higher Secondary School, MGR Nagar and Chennai High School, Kanniappa Nagar attended camp.

  • "More than the game, our main focus was on character building and value education. The very first day of the camp, we made it clear to the participants no foul language will be tolerated in or outside the field. They were also taught discipline and punctuality. To our surprise, we saw a marked improvement in their attitude and language within a few days after the camp started" says Mr.Amul Raj, the physical training teacher at the Kanniappa Nagar School and a qualified soccer coach with many tournaments behind him.

  • The 2-hour session would start with a vigorous 20-min. workout session in the morning followed by practice. The initial reluctance among the boys, unaccustomed as they are to physical activity, vanished in a couple of days as evident from their attendance and spirited participation.

  • Kumaresan, a plus 2 student who aspires to become lawyer says, "I am enjoying every moment of this camp. I thought pursuing sports is an impediment to scoring good marks in the final exam. I am convinced it is actually a fine aid which makes us fit and improves our concentration".

  • What next? "It is not the end but a good beginning. Looking at the enthusiasm of the boys, we want the game to be an intrinsic and year-long feature of their academic life. We propose to identify talents and groom them through 2-hour training sessions, 3days a week, We will do everything to hold their interest in the game." says Ms. Ranjini, the physical training instructor at the MGR Nagar Chennai higher Secondary School who is helped by her husband, Mr. Bobby Jose, a seasoned coach himself.

  • "We are very happy our two schools have been chosen for this pilot project. We are sure it will bring about a healthy change in the behavioural pattern of the students and make them more responsible and disciplined", say in unison Ms. Selvi, the Headmistress of Chennai High School, Kanniappa Nagar and Ms.R.Banumathi, HM, MGR Nagar Chennai HS school.
 
 

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