Inclusive sports event generates friendliness among participants and an atmosphere of fun and frolic
Although COVID-19 brought most of the activities to a halt, we, therefore, were reluctant to go ahead with the event as the safety of participants was first priority for all of us at Hope Disability Centre. We discussed the matter with our beneficiaries who in fact, goaded us to conduct the event but with strict compliance with safety protocol.
Most of the participants look forward to this event with zest because the environs it is held in make it an experience worth cherishing for a long time. The venue like last year was Ski resort Gulmarg which was enveloped with snow and tourists could be seen having a great time.
Continuing with its efforts to promote the inclusion of persons with disabilities into the mainstream, She Hope Society for Women Entrepreneurs with the support of the HCL Foundation came together to organize the tournament in the Gulmarg on 15th February 2021. The participants were transported to the venue by the SHSFWE and their excitement was to be seen to be believed. The main objective behind organizing this event is to encourage inclusion and well-being. And in the case of Jammu and Kashmir, which are among the states that have the highest number of persons with disabilities, holding such events instills a sense of belonging among them.
It is the second time such an event is being held and the atmosphere was friendly and one could see the bond happening between the participants.
Since the event was inclusive so the competing teams comprised both persons with and without a disability. Three competitions were held in Carrom, Chess, and skiing.
Before the game got underway, rules were unambiguously shared with the teams so that the spirit of the game is not undermined.
The teams were chosen on the basis of a draw as the number of persons interested in playing was high. And equal representation was given to both persons with and without disabilities.
The games were played with keen competitiveness and in a friendly spirit. Chess was intensely fought and carrom had some fun moments. Skiing drew a lot of attention of passersby and they also cheered the participants especially persons with disabilities.
For persons with disabilities, it was a whole new experience as they rarely get to participate in any competitive sport. The audiences enjoyed every moment of the competition and cheered for competing players.
Mementos were given to the winners in the end.