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IndusInd Bank launches “IndusInd For Sports” – a non-banking sports vertical

MUMBAI: IndusInd Bank today announced the launch of its non-banking sports vertical, ‘IndusInd For Sports’, to make sports an integral, intrinsic  and strategic element for both internal and external stakeholders.  Using the unique power of sports to attract, mobilise and inspire, “IndusInd For Sports” attempts to bring out the sporting best –human values, inclusion and sustainability. The vertical will entail year-long engagement activities for customers, employees and the community through well thought-out programmes.

As a logical step in that direction, IndusInd for Sports has launched the Para Champions Programme – IndusInd Umang, a first-of-its-kind platform exclusively designed for differently-abled sportspersons.  The programme will provide a series of well-structured support systems to encourage emerging and elite para-athletes, who have overcome challenges and excelled in their chosen sport against all adversity. This is the first time that a cohesive and comprehensive programme and commitment have been put in place for para-athletes by any corporate, in the country.

The Para Champions Programme – IndusInd Umang – is in association with GoSports Foundation, an independent, professionally-managed and donor-funded organisation focused on promoting sports in India. In addition to financial scholarships the Programme will also help athletes with access to the top sports science and sports medicine experts provide opportunities for high-performance training and enable them to travel to events with their escorts/guardians.

Fifteen emerging and elite para athletes have been selected, through a comprehensive process, to receive support under the programme in the first year. Two among these, Amit Saroha and Devendra Jhajharia, have already qualified to represent India at the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro this September. Para swimmer Suyash Jadhav, also among the 15 athletes, has already breached the ‘A’ qualification mark for the Paralympics this year. The programme seeks to impact the lives of the selected fifteen athletes positively, and boost them to the next level in their sporting journeys.

The GoSports Foundation’s advisory board comprises sporting icons Abhinav Bindra, Rahul Dravid and Pullela Gopichand, who guide their athlete and sports ecosystem development programmes.

Romesh Sobti, Managing Director and CEO, IndusInd Bank said, “Sport is all about celebrating the triumph of the human spirit, and the ability to overcome the odds. It is a great way to learn how grit and determination can help overcome perceived limitations. Through the IndusInd For Sports vertical, our aim is to tap the latent sporting culture of the country through various engaging programs.”

Emphasising the importance of sustainability and inclusion, Paul Abraham, COO, IndusInd Bank, said, “The newly launched vertical seeks to tap into sports as a means of empowerment and showcase the extraordinary achievements of sports which could be on the principles around inclusion, fairness, and teamwork. From a CSR perspective, our association with the sports world would herald new opportunities and enable our organization to make a difference.”

Excited about the initiative, Sanjeev Anand, Country Head – Commercial Banking, and in-charge of the sports vertical at IndusInd Bank, said, “There is a sportsperson in everyone and this new vertical endeavour to unleash this very sporting spirit. The first of such programme is the Para-Champions Programme; we really look forward to support some of India’s most talented differently-abled athletes, who have the potential to put India on the sporting map. In GoSports Foundation, we have a team that is credible and passionate about the cause. We believe that this will be a rewarding long-term association that will impact the lives of para-athletes and change perceptions about differently-abled people.”

“At GoSports Foundation, we are committed to creating a positive sports ecosystem that is responsive to the needs of our athletes, whether they are able-bodied or differently-abled. We are grateful to IndusInd Bank for their wholehearted support towards helping para-athletes achieve their sporting goals. By showcasing the sporting accomplishments of differently-abled athletes, we can inspire others to look at sport as a means of empowerment,” Deepthi Bopaiah, Executive Director at GoSports Foundation said.

The Advisory Board of the Para Champions Programme, consisting of Sanjeev Anand, Country Head – Commercial Banking, IndusInd Bank; Nandan Kamath, Managing Trustee, GoSports Foundation; and Deepthi Bopaiah, Executive Director, GoSports Foundation will oversee the initiative.