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INDIA: Parish inaugurates two basketball courts

Salesian programs around the globe focus on socio-sports education


(MissionNewswire) The Salesian Christ King Parish, located in Sonapahar, India, inaugurated two basketball courts on the parish grounds with the launch of the 2022 school year. Father Sebastian Tirkey, parish priest, and Father Pyndeilang Khongkhlad, assistant parish priest, joined the Salesian community in celebration.

The event brought together Salesian sisters, teachers, parents and students. Shri Evanmi Lyngdoh, the additional assistant commissioner of West Khasi Hills, Nongstoin, was the chief guest. Students of Christ King Higher Secondary School, led by Abigail Lyngkhoi, sang the centenary song. There was also a ribbon cutting ceremony and a celebratory dance by students from Christ King Higher Secondary School and Don Bosco Lakeshore School.

Lyngdoh also gave a celebratory speech highlighting how important sports are for young students. He noted that sports help to provide youth with healthy activities, keep them away from at-risk behaviors and give them discipline in their lives. Further, he said that the availability of a playground for games is of paramount importance.

Salesian programs around the globe have a focus on socio-sports education. Playing sports helps youth learn new skills and engage with their peers. Sports and activity are particularly important during the pandemic when many have become more sedentary.

“Sports programs teach youth both on and off the field,” said Father Gus Baek, director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “Learning and playing team sports encourage leadership skills as well as teach youth to work as part of a team. Students also learn important social skills and have opportunities for growth and maturity.”

India has the world’s fourth largest economy but more than 22 percent of the country lives in poverty. About 31 percent of the world’s multidimensionally poor children live in India, according to a report by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative.

India’s youth face a lack of educational opportunities due to issues of caste, class and gender. Almost 44 percent of the workforce is illiterate and less than 10 percent of the working-age population has completed a secondary education. In addition, many secondary school graduates do not have the knowledge and skills to compete in today’s changing job market.


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ANS – India – Christ the King Parish Sonapahar: inauguration of the basketball courts

Salesian Missions – India

World Bank – India