Skip to main content

India's Football Village - Youth For Change

Football Village Rurka Kalan YFC Punjab

Kicking Drugs Out

Can you believe that the simple game of football can change the game of drug abuse? Well, it did in Rurka Kalan, Punjab. Where every house has at least one footballer. The 80s saw one of the darkest periods in Punjab's history with drug abuse rampant in every village.

Hope came from an NGO called Youth for Change (YFC). Through unconventional means, they tried to keep kids away from drugs. After school hours were particularly vulnerable, so kids had to be kept busy then.

YFC swung into action and started football training at that time. Slowly the players began to outnumber the patients. Number of kids affected by drugs is now lowest in Rurka Kalan which has decreased from 70% to 25%.

Football Village Rurka Kalan

That's not all, YFC also trains young girls to go beyond the household chores. Today, it has become a world class facility with fitness experts and international coaches. Its students have won national and international championships including the Street Child World Cup 2010 in South Africa. What started as a distraction has today become a career path for the youth of Rurka Kalan.