Rajasthan Royals might be a team in a men’s cricket league, but off the field, women are front and centre in everything we do. With multiple teams in the management being led by women, the Rajasthan Royals stand out in the sports industry, which is largely known to be male-dominated. Outside the organisation, we endeavour to constantly work towards creating platforms which give women an equal chance to pursue their dreams and help them become self-sufficient.
Enabling Empowered Women Through the Royal Rajasthan Foundation
With the motto Aurat Hai To Bharat Hai/With Her We Rise, the Royal Rajasthan Foundation (RRF) is working towards its goal of creating economic opportunities to promote self sufficiency amongst the women of Rajasthan. The foundation has partnered with Jaipur Rugs Foundation to run programmes for skill development in handicrafts and rugs weaving and facilitating market linkage for the local women.
Rajasthan continues to grapple with the issue of water scarcity and women have to walk several kilometres in the torrid heat of the desert every day to collect water for their households. RRF aims to improve the accessibility of water in the state and has partnered with Gram Chetna Kendra (GCK) to carry out a native tree plantation drive to increase the groundwater levels. When water is easily accessible to households, women would have the time to engage themselves in more meaningful tasks.
As a part of its Women’s Access to Healthcare initiative, the RRF is engaged in conducting sessions for menstrual health and hygiene as well as mental health awareness for women and girls. Under the same programme, women have also been trained in pad stitching.
Royal Sparks - Identifying and Nurturing Young Cricketing Talent
Rajasthan Royals’ Youth Cricket Programme aims to provide equal opportunities to talented girls and boys. Through this initiative, girls aged 6-18 have a platform to exhibit their cricketing skills and learn from national and international coaches. The comprehensive curriculum of the programme imparts not just top-level cricket training, but also mentoring and life skills education. The programme also ensures that the girls get adequate competitive match practice.
Leading the Way
Outside of the cricket field, a number of women occupy leadership roles at Rajasthan Royals, heading teams to ensure smooth management of behind-the-scenes operations round the year.
Harvinder Kaur Sahni
Chief Financial Officer
Harvinder joined the Royals in 2008 and has been leading the finance team since the inaugural season of the IPL. “Since it was a start-up, my responsibility was to set accounting and finance functions from scratch and to put the house in order and who could do that better than a woman,” she recalls her initial days at the Royals. Harvinder, also known as Mona to her colleagues, was one of the few women in the team back in 2008 and she is glad that is no longer the case.
Project Leader, New Business
Shuchi joined Rajasthan Royals after two years of working at different sports organisations in the United States. She is passionate about sports and is happy that her role at the Royals gives her the chance to be connected with it. Shuchi wants to see more women working in the sports industry. “Right now, there are probably ten thousand men who could get my job, but maybe hardly a few women. So we got to get more women in,” she says.
Head of Communications
Despite being apprehensive about working in the sports industry initially, Astha realised that sports was what she wanted to make a career in, soon after joining the Royals. She has been a part of the franchise for six IPL seasons and is now proud of her journey. “Representation does matter but never get intimidated by lack of women’s representation in the sports industry, it’s our differentiator,” is her advice to women and girls who want to work in the sports industry.
Read full stories about the inspired women working at the Rajasthan Royals.
Not a Taboo Anymore. Period.
By partnering with Niine during the 2020 IPL season, Rajasthan Royals became the first Indian sports team to be sponsored by a menstrual hygiene brand. The aim of the partnership was to remove the stigma and normalise conversations around menstruation in India. Apart from the team wearing the logo of the brand on the back of the jersey, some of the Royals players participated in a rapid-fire quiz to test their knowledge about periods and bust myths around the subject.
Along with the stigma surrounding periods, we also urge the society to break down the stereotypes directed at women. Our Women’s Day post is a reflection on how sport has helped women challenge such stereotypes.
At the Royals, we are committed to creating opportunities for women to empower themselves and we strive to make our contribution towards an equal future. To all the women out there - Happy International Women’s Day from the Royals Family.