Bustle and excitement were emanating from the Moushumi field in Rayerbazar on July 5, as two groups of highly charged children donned their favourite Brazil and Argentina jerseys for a display of high-octane athleticism. Cheering them on were not only a group of curious locals, but a lot of renowned celebrities as well!
Save the Children and Manobik Shahajaya Shongstha (MSS) organised this football match with an aim to demonstrate that the underprivileged children should have the opportunity to participate in sports, for the sake of their physical and mental development. The organisation has been providing integrated support to children and families living in the Rayerbazar slum. Under the Shishuder Jonno programme, it has been possible to reach 28,000 people last year through education, health and nutritional support.
The likes of Iresh Zaker, Samina Chowdhury, Chowdhury Jafarullah Sharafat, and Munni Saha were cheering on the children. “I am amazed by the enthusiasm of these young players.
I cancelled my show this morning to encourage these children,” says Samina Chowdhury. “If these children are provided an opportunity, they will certainly make a difference.” Iresh Zaker, an ardent follower of football, says that the results barely mattered in the game. “I am not supporting any particular team today, because all the children are playing fantastic. It is important to convey the fact that sports are extremely necessary for the children, so I really appreciate Save the Children and MSS for coming up with this event.”
Brazil had won the match, courtesy of a thrilling tie-breaker. However, all of the children had won the hearts of the audience, including the celebrities.