My name is Vinay and I’m 18 years old. I’m a young leader at Khelo Rugby. I would like to share about my community and how Khelo Rugby has helped me and many youngsters from my area, keeping us focus on good things. The name of my community is Ak Nagar which is in Sarjapur. From childhood I have seen many young people destroying their lives, getting involved in drugs and alcohol in the area. Because of that, many children stopped studying and started working so they could get some money to buy bad stuff. I have lost a lot of my friends who went down the wrong path. One thing I had in my mind was that I didn’t want to end up like them.

I got introduced to Khelo Rugby back in 2017, where I have seen how children are growing through sport and learning important life lessons. Only few people used to come for training from my area because their parents were worried about them getting involved with bad things. I feel so happy and proud that, with help of Khelo Rugby, my friends Vikram and Vishal got the opportunity to do internship with Decathlon for 2 years, which they have successfully completed.

Vikram is now doing part-time work with Decathlon whilst also studying at university. Vishal is also studying at university. I look up to them. I also want to do good things like them and learn more.

Today I am leading my community and making sure none of the children go down the wrong pathway. Children should play sport and do well in life – that’s what makes Khelo Rugby a great organisation. I am so grateful that I’m part of Khelo Rugby and am able to help many children in community. Today lots of children play rugby in my community and less drop out from school. The small discussions with children can make a big difference - that’s why after training we do charcha [discussion] with the children to know more about them, find out their problems and find the solution.