Joint Venture Between NRIs and Resident Indians Results in Rural Punjabi Health Clubs

by Tanya Thomas on Sep 12 2008 6:03 PM

Thanks to the gracious effort of several non-resident Indians and local residents, the villages of Doaba region can heave a sigh of relief. The joint venture is promoting health facilities in these rural areas to motivate youth against drug addiction and encourage them to join health clubs and sport activities.

The efforts are showing results, as several adolescents and the teenaged young men Bholath constituency can today be noticed visiting the newly built health clubs in their respective villages.

These clubs are a fascination for the village youth, as they have been equipped with multi-purpose health machines.

There are about 130 villages in the Bholath constituency and 125 villages have got their clubs registered with the Youth Services Department of the Government.

About 100 of these villages are today well-equipped with the latest multi-purpose health machines and other required equipments.

The objective is to motivate rural youth to take care of their health and stay away from drugs.

Sukhpal Singh Khaira, Member of the Legislative Assembly, said: "Many people of my constituency are settled abroad. When they came to know about the health clubs they also wanted to participate. NRI interest in these activities is increasing. They feel happy to see the people of their village becoming healthy. I hope this programme will spread all over Punjab and India. This is a kind of youth mobilization promoting a positive approach towards life. This also helps them to stay away from social evils like drugs," he added.

Youngsters are not required to pay any fees for membership. Each club has an instructor.

Khaira appreciated the help and cooperation extended by local NRIs and Member of Parliament, Dharampal Sabharwal.

Khaira told during the last assembly elections, Sukhpal Singh had promised to distribute health machines in all the 130 villages of his constituency to create health awareness among the youth and focus their energy towards building health and fitness.

He described the initiative as a part of his "Be healthy" campaign. He is also planning to arrange a good diet for the members of the health clubs.

He would also organize "Health festivals" annually, where inter villages tournaments would be held to generate a sense of competition among them.

"Youngsters in the rest of the Punjab would follow the path shown by the youth of Bholath constituency to maintain good health and shun drugs," said Jatinder Pal Singh, a local resident of the Ramgarh Village.

"It's a good concept. Earlier, youngsters had to go to cities to practice, it's a good thing that now it is available here. People practice both in the morning and the evening. It's the best way for them to keep away from drugs and stay healthy," Paramjeet Singh, a club member.

For students, the opening of health clubs close to their homes has proved attractive.

"Earlier, I had to go to another health club, situated nearly 10 kilometer from Ramgarh. But the new health club has cheered health enthusiasts like me," said Gurwinder Singh, one local youth.