India launched its first space research observatory and several U.S. satellites on Monday, part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s drive to expand his country’s influence in the competitive, £200 billion global space industry. The observatory, named ASTROSAT, will help Indian scientists intensify space exploration efforts by studying distant celestial objects …Read More »
Facebook is launching an open platform for online content and app developers to join its Internet.org service, in a move the social media giant said would boost efforts to get people online in low-income and rural areas in emerging markets. The platform, unveiled on Monday, will be open to all …Read More »
England cricketer Ravi Bopara this week launched 'Chance to Shine Street Youth', a new initiative aimed at getting kids off the streets and playing cricket by the charity Chance to Shine.
The project is the youth element of the charity’s community programme ‘Chance to Shine Street’ and will be sponsored by mobile network operator Lycamobile.
Chance to Shine Street is free to take part in and offers 8 to 15-year-olds with no access to cricket facilities the chance to show off their skills at year-round weekly sessions held at community venues as well as designated areas around housing estates and parks.
The format used is six-a-side tape ball cricket.
All-rounder Bopara helped launch the program at the Kia Oval.
“Chance to Shine Street can help massively by giving kids access to somewhere to play cricket. They just want a place to play cricket, they don’t care how it’s done and sometimes those kids don’t have the opportunity in inner-cities”, Bopara said.
“Tapeball cricket is so simple: get a tennis ball, tape it up, let’s play cricket. It speeds up the game, it’s exciting and I used to love it as a kid”, he added.
Luke Swanson, Chief executive of Chance to Shine, said: “Chance to Shine Street is fast-paced, hard-hitting, loud, fun and open to anyone. It has a proven record of attracting young people, supporting their development and keeping them engaged in the game.”
Chance to Shine Street is the latest cricket initiative to receive the backing of Lycamobile and its enigmatic Sri Lankan-origin chairperson Subaskara Alirajah.
“We have always had strong ties to cricket with our sponsorship of Surrey County Cricket Club and UK Test Match Grounds, so to support Chance to Shine and their ‘Street’ programme is a perfect synergy for us”, Mr Alirajah says.
“Lycamobile’s mission is to keep communities connected wherever they are in the world which is at the core of the Chance to Shine work - something we are very proud to be associated with”, he adds.
With the partnership Lycamobile also becomes headline sponsor of the Chance to Shine Street Awards, which reward and recognise players and coaches involved in the programme.
Launched in 2008, Chance to Shine aims to bring cricket to young people in urban areas where there are few green spaces and fewer traditional cricket clubs.
Youth projects currently run nationally in eight key areas, including cities home to large cricket-loving migrant communities such as Birmingham, Leicester, London, Manchester and Bristol.
The charity identified towns and cities that lacked cricket provision and areas within them that were socially deprived or had high levels of crime and anti-social behaviour.
The charity is also using the game to promote social cohesion and connect young people from different backgrounds in diverse communities.
Chance to Shine Street has reached nearly 40,000 young people since 2008 and, working closely with local county cricket boards, will bring cricket to a further 3,000 participants in 2015.Read More »
American talk-show queen Oprah Winfrey has launched a new range of “luxury” teas apparently inspired by her high profile visit to a Mumbai slum in 2012. ‘Oprah Chai Tea’ went on sale at Starbucks outlets across the US and Canada on Tuesday. Winfrey says she was inspired by a “memorable …Read More »
The former Chief Executive of Apple has launched a new, low-cost smartphone in India to counter what he called the “overpriced” iPhone. Sculley, who was CEO at Apple from 1983 to 1993 and who famously forced Steve Jobs out of the company, said his new ‘Obi’ phone will lure consumers …Read More »
Britain’s biggest tourism promotion body has launched a mobile app aimed specifically at fans of Bollywood as the government continues its efforts to encourage India’s burgeoning middle-classes to come spend their money in the UK. Theresa May notwithstanding. VisitBritain’s ‘Bollywood in Britain Destination Movie Map’ will help users find destinations …Read More »
Despite the public outrage in the wake of the gang rape of a student in New Delhi in December 2012 and a toughening of legistlation, India remains a dangerous place for women. And now champion Indian boxer Mary Kom is launching a campaign that she hopes will be part of …Read More »
She’s been described as the new ‘poster girl’ for the fight against cancer and was even chosen to front a new ad campaign for Cancer Research UK earlier this year.
Now, breast cancer survivor Seema Jaya Sharma – whose music videos and video diaries have inspired thousands – is taking her campaigning to another level.
Tuesday saw the launch of www.canmates.com, an online “friend finder” service aimed at the friends and family of cancer sufferers struggling to cope with the horrific diseases that is becoming increasingly prevalent but remains little understood within the British Asian community in the UK.
36-year-old Sharma, a mother of two, set up the website after seeing the impact her diagnosis had on her mother and two young children.
“When I was diagnosed with cancer everyone’s focus was on me and my well being and my comfort. But what about my mother? What about my friends?
It’s important for these people to be able to connect with others who can empathize with their situation and understand what helps and what doesn’t. That’s what we aim to achieve with canmates.com”, Sharma said.
It’s not merely virtual interaction between people going through a harrowing experience.
On a more practical level, the website offers people the opportunity to offer and exchange various skills to help individuals and families coping with cancer.
Sharma, a single mother, says it would have been virtually impossible for her two young children, now aged 15 and 7, to be looked after as she underwent treatment and is thankful to her mother who took over childminding duties.
With canmates.com’s ‘Skills Bank’, people can offer to help out sufferers with everything from doing the school run to preparing a meal. All volunteers will be vetted and CRB-checked.
Among those pledging their support to Sharma at the launch were Raj ‘The Hitman’ Hundal, the World Pool Masters Champion who said Sharma was “re-defining” the very meaning of a champion; and well-known British Asian media mogul Terry Mardi, who described canmates.com as “revolutionary”.
www.canmates.com is the latest way-point in a remarkable journey that began back in 2009 when the effervescent Sharma was diagnosed with breast cancer. She had found the lump in her left breast whilst playing with her young daughter and she received a letter confirming cancer around Diwali that year.
“I cried for a second but then that was it”, Sharma later said in an interview.
I was going to fight my hardest, irrelevant of what stage the cancer was in.”
It was a fight that she shared with the rest of the world with video diaries and music videos that have racked up thousands of hits and inspired multitudes.
Her latest video is 'Diagnosed'.Read More »
Bollywood’s been marginally slow with the uptake in exploring the multifarious different ways of expanding a film’s revenue generating stream; merchandizing and comic books are a relatively new thing in the business. However, after the tremendous success of a new comics franchise arising out of Hrithik Roshan’s ‘KRRISH 3’, ‘Bullett …Read More »
The Indian government has launched the country’s first ever “All Women’s Bank”, aimed at empowering the country’s female population, a vast majority of whom don’t have access to banking services. Finance Minister P Chidambaram inaugurated the Bhartiya Mahila Bank on the 94th birth anniversary of former Indian Prime Minister Indira …Read More »