Visakhapatnam: With an objective to empower underprivileged children by providing them grassroots-level basketball programme, Hi5 Youth Foundation has partnered with Sachin Tendulkar Foundation (STF) to construct basketball courts in Andhra Pradesh and Arunachal Pradesh. These will be the fifth and sixth basketball courts to be developed with the support of STF.

It may be noted that Hi 5 Youth Foundation and STF have been collaborating to build sports infrastructure in schools since 2020.

The new basketball court venue would be APSWR school in Chittoor, which is also known as Dr BR Ambedkar Gurukulam. The school is home to aorund 400 girl students from grades five to 10. Andhra Pradesh basketball association conducts state camps and prepares teams for national tournaments here.

Speaking about the collaboration, cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar said sports is a powerful tool that not only keeps children physically fit but also builds character, self-esteem, and confidence.

“It empowers children from marginalised backgrounds with the required skills that can help them succeed in all fields of life. The expansion of our association with Hi 5 Youth Foundation to develop two more basketball courts for children in tribal communities and girls, in particular, is one more step in our vision to transform India from a sports-watching nation to a sports-playing nation,” said Tendulkar.

Hi 5 Youth Foundation founder Usha Sundar said they are excited about partnering with STF in their mission to promote sports and empower youth. “Creating inclusive spaces will help young talents thrive and bring communities together. STF currently supports 300 children at its tribal centres in Maharashtra. The foundation has built two half-courts and one full court in a remote village in Gujarat and another full court at the Parivaar Education Society campus in West Bengal,” she said.

Apart from Chittoor, the second court will be built at RKM School in Aalo, Arunachal Pradesh. Established in 1966, this school focuses on uplifting the underprivileged tribal community in the north-eastern state through education, healthcare, and livelihood initiatives.

With the help of doctors at the Inga Health Foundation’s hospital, the Sachin Tendulkar Foundation is working to put smile back on children’s faces, through cleft lip and palate surgeries.

Sachin Tendulkar on Friday has revealed that his foundation alongside the Inga Health Foundation’s hospital is helping the babies born with deformities in Jammu and Kashmir.

Tendulkar, who has recently been on a trip to Jammu and Kashmir along with his wife Anjali Tendulkar and daughter Sara Tendulkar has put down a heartfelt note with a video on the social media accounts.

“We don’t often think about our ability to smile, as a gift. We consider it a given. There are a few, who struggle to express even this basic emotion. Nearly 60,000 babies in India are born every year with deformities that inhibit their smiles,” wrote Sachin.

“Through Sachin Tendulkar Foundation, we have been working with a wonderful set of doctors who strive to put a smile back on children’s faces, through cleft lip and palate surgeries.

“One of the centres we have been supporting is in Srinagar. During our trip to Jammu and Kashmir, we spent time in Inga Health Foundation’s hospital, interacting with doctors, children and their parents.

“Listening to the stories of how the surgery has transformed lives of these children was indeed gratifying. Anjali, Sara and I were all smiles after meeting these little heroes. We are happy to have contributed to this beautiful change in their lives.”

Sachin has described the trip as a “beautiful experience” that will forever hold a cherished place in his memory.

During his recent trip to the Kashmir valley, Sachin had also several videos, including him visiting a cricket bat making factory, enjoying time with his family at the Shikara, playing cricket on the roads, and meeting Jammu and Kashmir’s Para cricket team captain Amir Hussain Lone.

Tendulkar Foundation and the Yuwa Foundation work in collaboration in the district to help and develop the girl footballers. The Indian batter would say that he got inspired by these children.

Former Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar along with his wife Anjali Tendulkar were in Ranchi at at Ormanjhi block of the district to encourage girl football players of the Yuwa Foundation.

“Children’s energy is infectious. I saw them working hard and enjoying themselves. I recalled my childhood,” Tendulkar said while speaking to media persons.

“The reason behind me coming here is the children. If we get a chance to smile because of them, then there can’t be anything bigger than that. I will come here again soon,” Tendulkar said.

Tendulkar Foundation and the Yuwa Foundation work in collaboration in the district to help and develop the girl footballers. The Indian batter would say that he got inspired by these children.

SachinSachin Tendulkar and Anjali Tendulkar with girl footballers. (Special arrangement)
“There are several difficulties in their lives even from home. They go to play football, which sometimes is not liked by parents. I would like to tell them to encourage children and support them. These children will bring smiles on their faces,” the 50-year-old said.

Festive offer
education, sports and health
Speaking about the Tendulkar Foundation Sachin would say that the body works in three verticals of education sports and health.

The cricketer would reveal the reason behind these verticals and say “Education is because my father was a professor, health because my wife is a doctor and sport because I am into it. If three are put together, it can shape the future of the country,”.

“Its team is honing the skills of girls, changing their lives, giving direction to their lives… The girls will go on to shine as bright as they possibly can,” Tendulkar would praise the Yuwa Foundation.

Tendulkar is one of the greatest batsmen in history of cricket. He repersented India in 200 Tests and 463 ODIs. He is also the only player to score 100 international tons and is the all time top run scorers in both Tests (15,291 runs) and ODIs (18,426 runs).

With PTI inputs

The four young medal-winning track and field athletes from rural Satara, who were accompanied by their two coaches, could not conceal their joy and excitement on meeting their sporting idol and asked Sachin questions about his career, diet, and fitness journey

Four young female athletes from the Mann Deshi Champions programme, which is supported by the Sachin Tendulkar Foundation, got a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet cricketing legend, Sachin Tendulkar in Mumbai recently.

The four young medal-winning track and field athletes from rural Satara, who were accompanied by their two coaches, could not conceal their joy and excitement on meeting their sporting idol and asked Sachin questions about his career, diet, and fitness journey.

All four girls hail from farming families in rural Satara district. Vaishnavi Sawant from Pulkoti, currently pursuing an MA, has won gold, silver, and bronze medals in the 3000-meter steeplechase at the National level. Arya Kale from Jambhulani, an 8th-grade student, has secured a National bronze medal in the 2000-meter race. Arati Babar from Dhokmoda, presently pursuing a BA, has actively participated in 5 Km and 10 Km races at the State level. Payal Bhosale, also from Dhokmoda, has won a silver medal in the 600-meter race at the District level.

The girls also wanted to know how a sportsperson could deal with failures. Sachin gave them advice from his experiences, “Failures are natural and a part of your journey as a sportsperson. You will face failures, and things will not always be in your favour every day. What really matters is your mindset in facing failure and not allowing it to affect your long-term plan. It is important to believe in yourself and keep working towards your goal. Just like you train your body to be strong, you must also train your mind to be resilient, learn from failures and move forward.”

The Sachin Tendulkar Foundation began working with the Mann Deshi Foundation in December 2023, supporting the Mann Deshi Champions programme with financial support to provide young boys and girls in rural India with sports facilities that nurture their overall physical, mental and social development.

Sachin, who was accompanied by his wife, Anjali Tendulkar also enquired about the girls’ training routine. He appreciated their dedication in not missing their twice-daily rigorous training, once before attending school in the morning and then in the evening after school. The Mann Deshi Foundation provides these young athletes with healthy and nutritious food after the training sessions.

The Sachin Tendulkar Foundation supports the Mann Deshi Champions programme in its mission to identify prospective outstanding athletes in rural India, offer financial and professional coaching support to participate in state, national and international competitions, and promote a career in sports. With a focus on increasing girls’ participation in sports, it also trains local coaches to identify and train talented athletes.

The Sachin Tendulkar Foundation supports multiple philanthropic initiatives to build a better tomorrow for India’s next generation. It works in the areas of children’s health, education and sports. Its other initiatives in supporting sports for children include working with the Hi-5 Foundation to develop character, confidence and team spirit in children in tribal areas of Maharashtra, West Bengal and Gujarat through a basketball excellence program called ‘Hope Through Hoops’ and backing Shreeja’s ‘Football and Beyond’ initiative which is empowering young girls from tribal areas of West Bengal.

New Delhi/Mumbai, November 3 (IANS) UNICEF South Asia Regional Ambassador and cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar led a day for children and called for gender equality with Muttiah Muralitharan, Sri Lankan cricket icon, during the India-Sri Lanka match in Mumbai.

The One Day for Children is a milestone event under the ICC-UNICEF partnership to support children’s issues and causes during the ICC Men’s World Cup Cricket 2023 taking place in India.

In the second innings of the match, Sachin Tendulkar and Muttiah Muralitharan pressed a button which lit up the32,000 strong iconic Wankhede Stadium in UNICEF’s iconic cyan blue colour, as part of a long-standing partnership between UNICEF and the International Cricket Council (ICC).

“The World Cup is an opportune moment to bring people together and promote hope and equality for every child, and I am delighted that today’s match between Sri Lanka and India is the One Day for Children match,” said Sachin Tendulkar, cricketing icon, and UNICEF South Asia Regional Ambassador. “I urge the players, the audiences here and across the world, and ICC partners, to pledge to treat boys and girls equally, irrespective of gender and to build a world where all children, especially girls, have equal rights. I urge everyone to be a champion for children and pledge to end gender inequality together!”

Earlier, the in-stadium audiences were handed LED wrist bands at the entry points to the stands as they arrived, which turned blue with the Stadium. The LED wrist bands came with a QR code, which also linked to a pledge for children. Everyone who got the band was encouraged to scan the QR code and pledge. Players also wore one-of-a-kind armbands with logos of the World Cup, One Day 4 Child and UNICEF along with the players’ names.

“Today’s World Cup match is dedicated to advancing the rights and well-being of all children. This is a valuable opportunity to bring the power of cricket – its massive reach across the globe – to advocate for better, safer and empowering lives for millions of girls and boys,” said Cynthia McCaffrey, Representative, UNICEF India. “We greatly value the partnership with ICC and BCCI to use cricket to raise awareness and promote gender equality among millions of young fans and followers, and urge them to be champions for children, especially for girls.”

Since 2016, UNICEF and ICC have used the potential of cricketing events to improve the lives of children and young people. From2022, the focus of the partnership has been to empower girls and young women through cricket.

“I strongly believe that playing sport can positively transform children’s lives. Ensuring participation of girls in sports can challenge gender norms and change attitudes in schools, playgrounds and homes,” added Tendulkar, UNICEF’s South Asia Regional Ambassador. “Girls and boys everywhere, dream of a better future, and when girls do better, we all do better!”

South Asia is home to one-third of the world’s 600 million adolescent girls – or a staggering 170 million – yet their potential to change the world remains largely untapped. For example, 1 in every 5 girls is undernourished. More than half of adolescent girls are anaemic. Only 36 per cent of girls have completed secondary school. Evidence shows that with adequate investments in the health and nutrition of girls and women, the world could save more than 12 million lives and prevent more than 30 million unwanted pregnancies.

The ICC Men’s World Cup Cricket in India, from 5 October to 19 November, has attracted millions of fans and viewers. In addition to the One Day for Children event, UNICEF and ICC have promoted gender equality through several cricketing initiatives during the ICC World Cup 2023. For example, cricketers from each of the 10 teams played with about 50 young boys and girls during 10 cricket clinics across 8 cities in India.

In August 2023, in his role as UNICEF South Asia Regional Ambassador, Sachin Tendulkar visited Sri Lanka and met with children and parents impacted by the COVID-pandemic and the 2022 economic crisis.

The Seva Kutirs, spread across far-off places in Madhya Pradesh inhabited by tribal people and supported by The Sachin Tendulkar foundation.

For residents of far-off villages in districts like Sehore and Sheopur in Madhya Pradesh, sustenance is a struggle. There are issues of accessibility and other factors that make basic amenities hard to attain. The likes of Ramkalibai, Kusumbai, Kavitabai, and many others, who hail from these districts, share a unified dream of seeing their children get their rightful education and do something substantial in life. They do not want their children to go through the same struggles they have had to go through.

Taking their first steps with their eyes alight with the same dreams as their parents, the likes of Pinkee, Sandhya, Anjali, and several others, would come regularly to the Seva Kutirs set up in various parts of Sehore and Sheopur, among other districts. These Seva Kutirs are supported by the Sachin Tendulkar Foundation.

The Seva Kutirs, spread across far-off places in Madhya Pradesh inhabited by tribal people, have been a one-stop destination for underprivileged children, for years. Supported by the Sachin Tendulkar Foundation, these Seva Kutirs have been taking care of the enrolled children with nutritious food, complementary education, and by engaging them in sports. These children lacked basic amenities for growth and had to traverse long, arduous roads for education. With the coming of the Seva Kutirs, they not only get nutritional food two times a day but also get the scope to flourish with quality education.

In his inning off the field, Sachin Tendulkar has been batting for the development of underprivileged kids through various associations. Apart from his support to the Seva Kutirs by Parivaar Foundation, he has also contributed to building a residential school for the children from the tribal areas in Madhya Pradesh, where they would get the best of health, education, and sports. The school benefits hundreds of children.

Sachin’s association has been fruitful for the young beneficiaries as the Seva Kutirs have acted as a launch pad for them. Twenty of them, including the likes of Pinkee, Sandhya, and Anjali, have recently been selected for admission into the Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRS). They have all passed the selection test for Class VI, with flying colours. The Eklavya Schools, set up by the Government of India, cater to candidates from the Scheduled Tribe (ST) category.

This news bears tremendous importance in the lives of these young girls and boys and their parents. They all hail from a meagre background with their parents being daily wagers or small farmers. Many of these young girls and boys are the first generation from their families to get an education. For most of them, continuing education after Class VIII becomes a hurdle for various reasons. Getting admission into EMRS is, therefore, a humble milestone in itself in their lives. With hopes in their eyes and determination at every step, they would get a chance to curve their paths.

This has certainly increased the strike rate of the inning Sachin is on, with the Sachin Tendulkar Foundation assisting hundreds of children and youth to get quality education, health, and sports facilities.

Cricket legend and Bharat Ratna Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar on Wednesday began a new innings – as the ‘National Icon’ for voter awareness and education for the Election Commission of India (ECI).

A MoU was signed with the legend for a period of three years at an event organised at Akashvani Rang Bhavan, New Delhi in the presence of Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar and Election Commissioners Anup Chandra Pandey and Arun Goel.

Sachin Tendulkar and elections:
This collaboration marks a significant step towards leveraging Tendulkar’s unparalleled impact with the youth demographics for increasing voters’ participation in the forthcoming elections, especially in General Elections 2024. The ECI through this partnership aims to bridge the gap between citizens, especially youth and urban populations and the electoral process thereby, trying to address the challenges of urban and youth apathy.

What does Sachin say?
Sachin, in his role as the National Icon for the ECI, expressed enthusiasm and commitment to the cause, and said that for a vibrant democracy like India, the youth play a key role in nation building. ”The hearts that beat for ‘Team India’ during sports matches, with the unified cheer – ‘India, India!’ shall also beat the same way to take our precious democracy forward. One simple yet most powerful way to do that is to cast our votes regularly,” he said.

He said: ”From thronging stadiums to thronging polling booths, from taking time out to stand by the national team to taking time out to cast our votes, we shall keep up the spirit and enthusiasm. When youth from the nooks and corners of the country participate in large numbers in electoral democracy, we shall see a prosperous future for our country.”

Speaking on the occasion, CEC Rajiv Kumar said that Sachin, an icon revered not only in India but globally, has a legacy that extends far beyond his cricketing prowess. He said Sachin’s illustrious career is a testament to his commitment to excellence, teamwork, and the relentless pursuit of success. His influence transcends sports, making him an ideal choice to bat for ECI and drive up voter turn-outs.

The collaboration will encompass a range of activities, including Tendulkar promoting voter awareness in various TV talk shows/ programs and digital campaigns etc, all aimed at raising awareness about the importance of voting and the role it plays in shaping the nation’s destiny.

The MoU was signed by Sachin Tendulkar at a function in the presence of Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, Deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis and Minister for Medical Education Girish Mahajan.

The Maharashtra government has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Sachin Tendulkar appointing the former cricketer as the ‘Smile Ambassador’ for its oral hygiene campaign. The agreement is valid for five years. The campaign is a part of the Indian Dental Association’s push for oral health.

The MoU was signed at a function in the presence of Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, Deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis and Minister for Medical Education Girish Mahajan.

Deputy CM: Sachin never endorses tobacco products

“While many celebrities are endorsing cancer-causing tobacco products, Sachin never does that. We are thankful to him for being the brand ambassador for our Swachh Mukh Abhiyan (oral hygiene campaign). Our aim is to send the message of oral hygiene to all the people of Maharashtra,” Fadnavis said.

Tendulkar says important to maintain good health

Tendulkar stressed the importance of maintaining good health. “When I was young I used to play many sports. I realised how a disciplined life is crucial to maintaining good health,” he said.

The Bharat Ratna awardee said he was proud to be part of the campaign and thanked the government for associating him with the drive. “Today is a special day for me… I thought that this initiative is so good that I need to be a part of it and contribute to it,” he added.

COLOMBO: Indian cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar pitched for a nutrient-rich diet and quality education for children during his school visits in Sri Lanka where he also teamed up with people impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and the country’s worst economic crisis.

Addressing an event, the iconic cricketer, in his role as UNICEF‘s Goodwill Ambassador, said, “Children are the future; if we support them today, they will make us proud tomorrow.”

Tendulkar said he was sorry to know that many households in Sri Lanka can’t afford to give quality and the quantity of food required by children.

“Many children suffer from stunting,” he said at an event hosted by UNICEF.

Tendulkar, 50, was appointed UNICEF Ambassador for South Asia in 2013 to advocate good hygiene and sanitation across the region.

“When I played school matches, the tendency was if I was batting at lunchtime not to have anything to eat. I would have a couple of soft drinks and a bat,” he said.

Tendulkar said he had to prepare differently when the playing standards got better. “This preparation was something I unknowingly ignored,” he said.

The cricketer later learned that not having a proper lunch impacted his view. “I got out after lunch at an important match, and the first thing I wanted to do was to eat,” he said, calling it a big lesson in nutrition.

“Children require a nutrient-rich diet and quality education to reach their full potential. By investing in their education and nutrition, we are not only investing in their future but also every country’s future,” said Tendulkar.

Pointing out that measures have been taken in India to tackle child malnutrition, Tendulkar said, “Something unique has started in India, which is local therapeutic foods, ready-to-eat packages.”

Through his role as a UNICEF Regional Goodwill Ambassador, Tendulkar has been committed to promoting child rights, protection, and development across the South Asian region.

“Children are the best teachers. They help us see (the) wisdom in the simplest of things. In this school situated in a serene Sri Lankan village, we observed compassion towards all beings,” Tendulkar posted on the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.

“All children take a few portions of food from their plates and keep it on a common plate – which is then served to birds. Such a beautiful thought on sharing, being grateful for our blessings and compassion. Something all of us can emulate,” he said.

On Monday, he visited the UNICEF programmes in the rural Sabaragamuwa province and met with children and parents impacted by the COVID-pandemic and the 2022 economic crisis.

Tendulkar also visited a preschool supported by UNICEF’s midday school meal programme and served children food.
“Every child should have the right to education. It is the foundation for every child,” Tendulkar stressed.

“When you spend time with children, you learn a lot of things”, Tendulkar said, recalling his days as a student and a cricketer. He also urged Sri Lankan children to play sports.

Tendulkar recalled warm memories associated with Sri Lanka during his earlier visits, both as a cricketer and as part of his engagements with UNICEF in 2015, a UNICEF press release said.

His last trip was in 2015 and was made to promote hand washing as a hygienic practice.

Tendulkar said he had been touring Sri Lanka since 1993 and had made many friends here, including Muttiah Muralitharan, the legendary Sri Lanka spinner.

Tendulkar, considered one of the greatest batsmen of all time in cricket, has been associated with UNICEF for over a decade for various causes.

In 2003, he was chosen to take the lead in the initiative to create awareness and promote polio prevention in India, according to UNICEF.

Later in 2008, he was roped in to create and promote hygiene and sanitation among communities and continues to do so over the years.

In 2019, he went on a three-day trip to Nepal to raise awareness for UNICEF Nepal’s ‘Bat for Brain Development’ campaign.

In his almost two-decade-long partnership with UNICEF, Tendulkar has been vital in furthering the campaigns, especially the ones aimed at providing a better future for underprivileged children.

“Together nations can do wonders, and that is the aim of my trip here. A brilliant learning experience for me, thank you so very much, UNICEF,” he said.

As the country’s economy makes gradual recovery, 3.9 million people, including children, are unable to afford adequate food, and 4.8 million children are struggling to keep learning.

COLOMBO/ KATHMANDU, 8 August 2023: Cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar visited Sri Lanka in his role as the UNICEF South Asia Regional Goodwill Ambassador. Sachin visited UNICEF programmes in the Sabaragamuwa Province and met with children and parents impacted by the COVID-pandemic and the 2022 economic crisis.

Tendulkar recalled warm memories associated with Sri Lanka during his earlier visits, both as a cricketer and as part of his engagements with UNICEF in 2015. He lauded the efforts of all government and non-government organisations in their efforts towards bringing a positive change despite challenging environments.

During the field mission, Sachin visited a pre-school, supported by UNICEF’s ongoing mid-day school meal programme, and helped serve nutrient-rich food to children. Since August 2022, UNICEF’s midday meal programme has been providing nutritious meals to 50,000 preschool children in nearly 1,400 schools across the country. The meal programme has also helped boost pre-school attendance.

“Children require a nutrient-rich diet and quality education to reach their full potential. By investing in their education and nutrition, we are not only investing in their future but also every country’s future,” said Sachin.

At another school Tendulkar visited, he observed teaching and learning activities for grade 3 children where many students shared their desire to stay in school and follow their dreams. Sachin then joined the senior school girls and boys on the pitch for a game of cricket.

“The children I spoke with, are showing great tenacity, and their hope for a better future remains strong. We need to continue supporting them so they keep achieving their goals,” added Sachin.

Tendulkar also visited families living in plantations, to understand their lives better. As part of the support for economic recovery, UNICEF provided cash transfers to more than 110,000 families with children up to two years of age to buy nutritious foods and other vital supplies needed for their children.

Tendulkar also took time to speak to a group of young people from Sri Lanka, in a close ‘Cricket Catch-Ups’ session during which he shared his experiences growing up, in overcoming obstacles, remaining resilient and focused in pursuing his goal. These young people are a part of the UNICEF-supported Children’s Club network of the Department of Probation and Child Care Services.

Sachin Tendulkar was appointed as the first UNICEF Regional Goodwill Ambassador for South Asia in 2013. Since then, he has been playing a pivotal role in improving the lives of children in South Asia.