The Street Child Cricket World Cup, organized by Street Child United, will be held in Chennai from 23-30 Sep 2023 ahead of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023. This unique tournament aims to promote the rights and well-being of street children while giving them an opportunity to shine on the international stage.
The Street Child Cricket World Cup is a powerful platform, as teams comprising street girls and boys from 24 countries including India, England, Burundi, Hungry, Mauritius, Bangladesh, Nepal, Rwanda, Mexico, Sri Lanka, South Africa will come together to participate, challenging stereotypes and advocating for gender equality, child rights, and the right to participation.
These children, who have faced adversity and hardships, are now representing their nations on the cricket field, proving that they are more than their circumstances.
The team of young girls and boys from CHETNA NGO, New Delhi is participating & has been preparing for it. These children, involved in various odd works, are now using cricket as a means to transform their futures. They have been practising under the guidance of coaches. Initially identified 40 street and working boys and girls from diverse vulnerable areas within Delhi.
Following a rigorous selection process, we have now selected a final cohort of 4 boys and 4 girls who will represent the event. These participants will go to Chennai, providing them with the opportunity to interact with individuals from diverse parts of the world for the very first time.
'While I've always enjoyed playing different sports, cricket wasn't something I actively pursued. I always thought that cricket was predominantly a male-dominated sport. This notion held me back from trying it, as I feared potential ridicule from those around me. This comprehensive training has not only enhanced my cricketing skills but has also instilled a sense of confidence and empowerment, dispelling my previous hesitations', said 14 year old Farzana.
Speaking about this opportunity, one of the youths, said, 'We are extremely excited to represent India in the Street Child Cricket World Cup. Cricket is not just a sport for us; it's a way to break free from the cycle of poverty and despair. We want to show the world that no matter where we come from, we have the talent and determination to succeed.'
'Street Children are like 'Sadak ki Googlee,' poised to navigate an unpredictable path when presented with the right opportunity. Over the past three months, we have witnessed profound transformations in a group of ten children, selected from among 50. They have emerged as heroes within their peer groups and communities, challenging gender stereotypes, displaying remarkable resilience in adverse circumstances, demonstrating unwavering courage in dismantling barriers,' said Sanjay Gupta, Director of Childhood Enhancement through Training and Action, an NGO dedicated to empower street children. CHETNA has played a crucial role in supporting and nurturing the dreams of these young cricketers. They have provided essential resources, coaching and mentorship to help children prepare for this international event.