A group of graduates from Khalsa College in Mumbai formed an NGO with a difference. Most NGOs which come up to serve slum dwellers focus on providing education. But this NGO named Anstrengung United is training slums kids from Dharavi in sports. The innate talent of the kids residing in these slums in the field of sports made them to take up the challenge. Shrungar Raul, lovingly called Nanu by everyone is one of the founding members of the Anstrengung United. This NGO helps a group of 200 kids from the slum region come down to play under Kin’s Circle Bridge in Matunga. This NGO provide mentoring and required sports equipment. When asked what’s the significance of their name – Nanu says, “ Anstrengung is a German word that means ‘efforts’ and United was added as the founders of the NGO were all football fans”
The volunteers of the NGO play along with these children as they are trained in hockey and football. Not only are they able to bring in a large number of kids from the slums, but they have also managed to acquire support of a large number of trustees, volunteers, and the parents of these children. These young men aim at providing sports as a method of self development to the children who are deprived of a comfortable life. Dhanajay Mahadik, the former Indian Hockey Team captain is seen training and playing with the kids under the bridge. He is also one of the trustees of this NGO! A team named Anstregung United Club is also playing the third division in the Mumbai District Football Association. Nanu works in the youth department of the Mumbai FC and is also an ex-captain of Mumbai University and also served as a Manchester United Soccer coach in Mumbai. He has provided almost all the children playing there with a Mumbai FC jersey.
The remarkable thing in this entire project is that the girls outnumber the boys! It gives pleasure to see girls playing with a new zeal. Mary Naidu, a girl from this NGO has been selected among the top 25 girls in Maharastra in the sub junior football team of the state!. India needs more such NGOs as sports is still being neglected in most parts.