Reliance Foundation Conferred with Sports for Social Change Award at Prestigious Sportstar Aces Awards
Reliance Foundation was conferred with the ‘Sports For Social Change (Chairperson’s choice)’ award at the prestigious Annual Sportstar Aces Awards on March 19 in Mumbai. In a video message to the gathering comprising some of India’s leading sportspersons and administrators, Mrs Nita Ambani, Founder & Chairperson of Reliance Foundation, reiterated her vision to make India a “truly global sporting powerhouse”. The award was accepted by Mr Nikhil Meswani, Executive Director, Reliance Industries Limited.
“I am honoured to receive this prestigious award on behalf of Reliance Foundation,” said Mrs Nita Ambani in her acceptance speech. “My gratitude to Malini and the Hindu Group, for sharing and recognising our passion for Indian sport. We are a young nation, brimming with talent, with nearly half of our population under the age of 25. With the right infrastructure, training, and opportunities, I'm sure they will make India proud.”
“It is my dream for every child in our country to have the Right to Education and the Right to Sport,” Mrs Nita Ambani added. “At Reliance Foundation, we are humbled to have reached out to 21.5 million children through our Education & Sports for All programme. We are committed to building a grassroots ecosystem for sports in India. Recently, India won the right to host the International Olympic Committee Session in 2023. This historic Session will open the doors of the Olympic opportunity for our youth, and be the beginning of a glorious new chapter for Indian sport.”
“I know that in the audience today are many young athletes who represent our great nation on the global stage. Their story, their sweat, their success will inspire the coming generations. Every time an Abhinav Bindra or PV Sindhu or Neeraj Chopra wins a medal for India, they inspire countless youngsters to follow in their footsteps. Let us together make India a truly global sporting powerhouse.”
While conferring the award, Mrs Malini Parthasarathy, Chairperson, The Hindu Group, said, “Reliance Foundation has demonstrated exceptional commitment to the cause of raising sporting skills through its Youth Sports initiative. The Foundation headed by Mrs Nita Ambani has demonstrated a rare dedication, focus and passion in this regard. It is noteworthy that Mrs Ambani’s efforts as an International Olympic Committee member has resulted in the announcement of Mumbai as the host of the International Olympic Committee session in 2023. The Reliance Foundation has invested heavily in a large outreach programme targeting particularly India’s underprivileged youngsters, imparting skills and coaching in key games like football and cricket.”
Since inception, the sports for development initiatives of RIL have reached over 21.5 million kids across the country from 13,000+ schools and colleges. While sporting activities were at a standstill due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Reliance Foundation remained steadfast in efforts to have a positive impact on the sporting ecosystem through online skill enhancement and community engagement programs.
RFYS conducted virtual sessions on a variety of sports-related topics including training, fitness, nutrition and well-being of athletes through partnerships with experts from Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital, National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA), UK Elite Sports Group (UKESG), Reliance Foundation Young Champs (RFYC), various ISL clubs and the RF Odisha Athletics HPC among others. These sessions attracted nearly 11,000 participants from across India. RFYS also conducted series of virtual Coach Education workshops in partnership with All India Football Coaches (AIFC) for football coaches with certification granted to nearly 420 coaches.