Nita Ambani led Reliance Foundation Youth Sports (RFYS) is an initiative driven by Reliance Foundation, a non-profit and CSR front of the Reliance Industries Limited, which focuses on providing a platform for youth sports in India, especially at the school and college level. Reliance Foundation Youth Sports was digitally launched on 23 July 2016 by Narendra Modi, the current Prime Minister of India. The Prime Minister also interacted with young footballers from eight cities via video conference. Currently, eight cities are a part of the foundation’s long-term goal which aims at establishing a sports association. Starting with football in 2016–2017, RFYS focuses on expanding in the coming years by organizing more sporting events.
Smt. Nita Ambani and PM Shri. Narendra Modi Launched RFYS:
Smt. Nita Ambani and honorable PM Sh. Narendra Modi on July 23, 2016 digitally launched the Reliance Foundation Youth Sports initiative all over India, kicking off nation’s largest multi-city, multi-sports school and college sports competition. Reliance Foundation will now invest in building a culture of sports in schools and colleges to unearth the vast and untapped talent in our education system. RFYS will promote and inculcate multi-discipline sports avenues among the youths of India. PM Narendra Modi interacted with the school children. At the launch event Mrs. Nita Ambani said, “We are extremely honored to have our Honorable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to inaugurate and support the Reliance Foundation Youth Sports. It has been my dream to see India develop as a multi-sports nation. I truly believe that sports can develop the youth in our country and inculcate values of self-discipline, sportsmanship, team spirit, leadership, integrity as well as promote a healthy lifestyle.” Reliance Foundation Youth Sports has set up a six member advisory board consisting of educationalists and leading sports personalities to guide the thinking and expansion for this initiative. The advisory board consists of: Nita Ambani, Sachin Tendulkar, Professor Dipak Jain, Leander Paes, Saina Nehwal and Ranbir Kapoor.
Reliance Foundation National Youth Sports Competition:
For first year, Nita Ambani led Reliance Foundation Youth Sports in partnership with All India Football Federation and all eight Indian Super League clubs, witnessed over 2400 teams from 1800 institutes in eight cities competing fiercely under the four categories i.e. Junior Boys, Senior Boys, Senior Girls and College Boys. The competitions had pre-qualifying rounds, followed by main draws respectively in Mumbai, Delhi, Guwahati, Kochi, Goa, Chennai, Pune and Kolkata. City winners in each category would qualify to play for the national honors. Following the launch in Mumbai for all categories, Delhi and Kolkata took centre-stage on September 1 as they kick-started their opening matches. Over the next three months, Mumbai and its suburbs saw over 500 institutes fielding over 600 teams played football at various grounds. Starting from next year, Reliance Foundation Youth Sports will double the participatory city numbers from 8 to 16 and progressively to 50 plus cities and far flung towns in India by the fifth year (2020). School and Colleges across country will have options to participate in multi-discipline sports such as Football, Basketball, Athletics, Badminton, Volleyball etc. at a National level through Reliance Foundation Youth Sports.
Nita Ambani at Reliance Foundation Youth Sports Finals:
Nita Ambani at RFYS said that, the major thing which encourages RFYS is that in the first year itself Reliance Foundation Youth Sports have reached out to 2 million children which includes 165 senior girls team. RFYS was started as the initiative to strengthen the eco system for grassroots sports in India. This programme was launched just 4 months before the finals and still they had reached to a majority of people (2 million). 1900 institutions participated, 2400 teams played out which 165 teams were of senior girls and 200 government institutions participated. Nita Ambani was very much overwhelmed by the kind of response she received not only from the students, the teachers, the parents but also from the P.E Teachers. She said they are further going to deepen their connection with the girls’ team. She says that every child should have the freedom to choose the sport that he or she likes, let them play and let us give them a platform to play competitive sports, so that they can look at a career in sports.
Nita Ambani aims at creating a sporting culture across the country by developing talent at the grassroots level and making sports an integral part of education.