Chinchala village, at a distance of 16 km from Chandrapur in Maharashtra, has a total population of about 2,736. Most of these residents fall under the caste categories of Other Backward Classes, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. They mainly work as farmers or daily-wage labourers. The local language is Marathi. Connectivity to and within the village is through bus and autorickshaw.
The village has a school for children in Std 1-10, but for further studies, children have to travel to Chandrapur. There is also a medical college – Vimladevi Medical College – at a distance of 1km from the village.
The biggest issue that the village faces is the scarcity of the water. In summer months, residents have to bring drinking water from faraway places as hand-pumps set up by the government do not provide sufficient water.
Magic Bus Youth Mentor Gitesh Musanwar visited the local school and with permission from the Headmaster, a demo session was organised to help parents and teachers understand how the Sport for Development programme works. The Headmaster enthusiastically welcomed Magic Bus and the programme in Chinchala started on August 12, 2011, with 119 children – 60 boys and 59 girls. The children were divided into seven groups and two Community Youth Leaders in the village started taking sessions every Thursday and Friday.
Gaurav joined Magic Bus in 2013. He was 9 years old at that time.
And, an insufferable bully.
Infact it was difficult to make Gaurav appreciate anyone around him. He liked bullying his peers and younger ones. He would be rude with them almost to extent of being abrasive. Children in his group disliked him.Teachers at his school repeatedly complained of his disregard for rules and lack of respect towards teachers.
Youth Mentor, Yogita, decided to have a conversation with Gaurav. She gently apprised him of the fallouts of his behaviour. She gently pointed out that he would not like to hear many of the things he told others. During the session on team building and respecting others, Gaurav was confronted by the confessions of those who are a target of bullying.
Gaurav has never teased or bullied any one in any way. He is respectful to all, regardless of age and gender.
Sapna, the Community Youth Leader, was very shy when she joined the programme. Initially, she didn’t get too involved with the children, but with continuous hand-holding during sessions, she developed an interest and started taking sessions on her own.
Yogita, another Community Youth Leader, also developed confidence after conducting a few sessions. She later joined the Magic Bus livelihood programme and is now working as a Youth Mentor in Chinchala.
The Gram Panchayat has also supported the Magic Bus programme in Chinchala. The Sarpanch, Headmaster and teachers all agree that the programme has positively impacted the children.
Magic Bus sport-for-development sessions are held on Thursdays every week from 4.00 to 6.00pm.
The sessions have the following structure:
(Photographs from Magic Bus areas of operation are for representational purposes only.)