Center for Sport Leadership Executive Director Carrie LeCrom, Ph.D. is currently in India for Phase 2 of ENVEST, a sport-for-development initiative funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs through their Sport Diplomacy Division. ENVEST consists of four separate cultural exchanges with countries in South and Central Asia: Kazakhstan, India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka. Phase 2 programming in Indian is being led by our partner Goals for Girls. Carrie is sharing her experiences through this blog.
I’m having a different experience on this trip, as I’m playing a support staff role. And while that’s a bit different for me, given that I tend to lead our sport for development projects, it’s allowed me to be more of an observer and truly enjoy taking in the moments like I haven’t before. Today was such a genuinely happy day. I was able to watch girls from the United States connect with their pen pals in India who they’d only ever met in writing. The connection was immediate and joyful, all of which is thanks to two amazing organizations who I will forever advocate for: Goals for Girls and Slum Soccer. Their histories are both unique and inspiring, but both come back to one thing: the power of the soccer ball. These images will show you how true that is.
I feel confident saying that the groups of girls have bonded and that our American delegation better understands the similarities and differences they share with their pen pals. We traveled last night to Delhi, where the Leadership Summit will begin tomorrow, so lots more to come!