While the excitement of children after meeting the South African Men’s Hockey Team had not still subsided completely, SOS Children’s Village Bhubaneswar was privileged, yet again, to host the Ireland Men’s Hockey Team on 9 December 2018.
The team arrived at the children’s village at 11AM and was received by children, SOS Mothers and other co-workers. They were welcomed with the traditional Indian Tilak Ceremony and were presented with an SOS India Cap each. This was followed by a village tour, wherein Village Director Mr. Ajaya Dash briefed the players about SOS India and its concept. While the players were thrilled to witness the family based care received by once parentless and abandoned children, their interaction with SOS Mothers and children made the visit overwhelming. Even though the Irish team had lost their battle at the Kalinga Stadium and were preparing for their journey back home, they regarded their visit to the children’s village as a much-needed one.
A cultural programme was organised for all guests at the event. As children indulged in dance and song performances, the players could not contain their happiness and even danced along with them. Not only was the team overwhelmed being a part of the programme, the media also enjoyed their visit to the children’s village. All players of the team were presented with beautiful greeting cards, especially made by children as a thank you to the team.
On the occasion, the Ireland Hockey Team Captain Mr. David Harte said, “It was a wonderful privilege to be here at the SOS Children’s Village. The downhearted team is now restored with energy and motivation on meeting these little ones.”
Soon after concluding the programme, a group photograph of the team with all children, SOS Mothers and staff was taken.