Wednesday 20 February 2013
Premier League Chief Executive Richard Scudamore made a visit to the Janki Devi Memorial Women's College this week as part of the British Trade Delegation to India.
The Trade Delegation, led by Prime Minister David Cameron, went to India with the aim of enhancing the opportunities for British business overseas and for Indian firms to invest in the UK.
"It was very encouraging to speak with so many young women who were enthusiastic about their participation in football"
It was not all about business, though, with a variety of sporting, cultural and educational elements to the trip included in order to underline the UK and India's close ties on and joint-commitment to quality education at all levels.
The visit to Janki Devi Memorial College served to demonstrate the UK's commitment to women and girls' social and economic empowerment, something that the Premier League has encouraged through a variety of good-cause programmes in India including its Premier Skills coaching and education courses.
The visit to Janki Devi Memorial College served to demonstrate the UK's commitment to women and girls' social and economic empowerment, something that the Premier League has encouraged through a variety of good-cause programmes in India including its Premier Skills coaching and education courses and its support for the Magic Bus charity.
Premier Skills is run in partnership with the British Council and Magic Bus is an organisation that gives young children from some of the poorest parts of India the opportunity to play sport.
Scudamore was joined on the trip by Universities and Science Minister David Willetts MP, Wolverhampton South-West MP Paul Uppal and a number of vice-chancellors from leading UK universities.
"When I visited Mumbai seven years ago to outline our support for the Magic Bus charity one of the challenges we faced was to create sporting opportunities at grassroots level for girls and young women," said Scudamore.
"For many the social and cultural pressures not to take part in sport were too great. Now those pressures seem to be relaxing and it was very encouraging to speak with so many young women at the Janki Devi Memorial College who were enthusiastic about their participation in football and other sports.
"The Premier League and our clubs have a long-held commitment to supporting good causes in the UK and that is now the case in several countries overseas, including India.
"The work the Premier League are doing in many places around the world is to be admired"
Paul Uppal MP
"Our Premier Skills courses run in partnership with the British Council are giving young people new skills and opportunities in several cities across the country and we continue to support Magic Bus in their efforts to make sport available to as many children as possible."
Paul Uppal MP joined Scudamore in meeting the College’s football team and was equally enthused at the sporting opportunities now available to young people, particularly women, in India.
Uppal has seen first-hand the excellent community work carried out by the Wolverhampton Wanderers Community Trust, including its Kickz social inclusion project and a health programme aimed at helping people with diabetes that was part-funded by a £500,000 grant from the Premier League and support from the local Primary Care Trust.
"Sport and especially football has a huge part to play in social development, particularly in promoting diversity,” said Uppal. "The work the Premier League are doing in many places around the world is to be admired. Closer to home I know all professional clubs take this work seriously, my own local club Wolverhampton Wanderers being as good as any."
To learn more about the Premier League's Creating Chances programme and support for good-causes click here.