Chevrolet India rebuilds football pitch, encourages under served children and youth of Kolkata

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P Balendran, VP - GM India (2nd from Left) and Mikael Silvestre - Man United legend (in Red T-shirt) inaugrate the renovated Rebecca Belilious Sports Ground in Kolkata on Saturday

With the fast disappearing open spaces in our cities, kids of the current generation are being robbed of the outdoor activities that they should indulge in and enjoy during their early life. Realizing the gravity of the issue and as a part of GM’s CSR initiative, Chevrolet India rebuilt and inaugurated the Rebecca Belilious Sports Ground at the Rebecca Belilious English Institution in Kolkata today. As part of the festivities, Manchester United Legend Mikael Silvestre shared personal insights about his own journey on and off the field and how play has served a key role throughout his life. He was joined by Sandip Dutta, trustee of the land; Mamoon, the founder of the school; and a host of other dignitaries and well-wishers.

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The outdoor sports pitch – located at Tikiapara, Howrah, in Kolkata – will serve as a safe place for children and the local community to play. The football pitch was revitalized for Slum Soccer, an organization that uses football to transcend race, religion, language and gender to bring about a change in the lives of street dwellers. To mark the occasion Chevrolet also donated 250 One World Futbols to the Rebecca Belilious English Institution. Chevrolet is the founding sponsor of One World Play Project, creator of the ultra-durable One World Futbol, which can withstand the most rugged conditions – never needing a pump or going flat, even when punctured

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The previous pitch was nothing but an open space covered in dirt and mud. The children of Tikiapara had no option but to play on it, despite its poor and dilapidated condition,” said P. Balendran, Vice President, General Motors India. “Chevrolet saw a place that could be completely rebuilt to allow the students to turn their lives around, encourage them to stay in school and unlock the potential for their future.”

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With this pitch, we will be reaching out to the most under-served children and youth of Kolkata,” said Dr. Abhijeet Barse, CEO of Slum Soccer. “Throughout the years, we have seen the impact and positive change that football and play can have on a child. Our partnership with Chevrolet will bring new possibilities to the Tikiapara community.”

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