Going To School and BT

Bengaluru, 4th March 2024 Going to School, a creative not-for-profit trust, in partnership with the Government of Karnataka and BT Group, organized ‘Match Day 2024’ to celebrate the power of sport to equip girls with digital and life skills to succeed in life and solve for the biggest challenge of our time, Climate Change.

Going to School has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Government of Karnataka to run the Outdoor School for Girls, a skills sports educational program for girls in Government Schools.

Placing girls at the centre of their story, the day began with an engaging discussion with the Team of 11 Girls who feature in the upcoming TV series. The dynamic conversation moved between the power of play to learn skills and the enterprising solutions girls had designed to solve for how to enable girls to play football in India and practice their digital skills to design enterprise solutions for Climate Change.

Guests present at the event included representatives from Going to School, BT Group, Principals of Government Schools and more than 500 girls from across the city. Additionally, Bengaluru FC Head Coach, Mr Gerard Zaragoza, Assistant Coach and former India International, Mr Renedy Singh, Team Players Aleksandr Jovanovic, Namgyal Bhutia, Ashish Jha, Director of Football, Mr Darren Cladeira and girls from Bengaluru FC’s U15s Women’s Team also graced the event.

It was a ‘zero plastic’ event, with sustainable street stalls serving snacks on leaf plates and juice. A sustainable shade umbrella photo booth with palm trees got everyone excited to click photos and interact with the media and representatives on the ground.

The Outdoor School for Girls project delivers sport (football) with digital, life, STEM, and Sustainable Entrepreneurial skills through an integrated curricula to girls in Government schools in India. From Grades 5-10, during school hours, the program is designed to equip girls with the skills they need to complete their education, moving from the game they have designed on the pitch to the wider canvas of the city, kick-starting sustainable enterprises, solving for Climate Change and create jobs solving for two of the city’s biggest challenges: youth unemployment and Climate Change.

Going to School aims to equip 2.7 million girls with football, life, sustainable and enterprise skills they need to complete their education and move from the pitch to leading enterprises that solve for Climate Change in the city and create jobs.

In partnership with BT Group, the Equinix Foundation is also supporting the Outdoor School for Girls program by providing funding, mentorship, volunteering, and expertise towards the development of the digital learning platform used by the girls to build their digital skills and design climate solutions.

Ian McBride, Head Responsible Business – India, BT Group said, “We have a long standing partnership with Going to School and the Outdoor School for Girls is a terrific opportunity to bring digital skills at scale via sport that support BT Group’s global manifesto goal to ensure technology is inclusive and for everyone to benefit.”


“As a football club that cares about the community, the environment and is completely behind empowering women through our sport, we are delighted to be associated with this fantastic initiative led by Going to School. Bengaluru FC has championed the cause of sustainability and awareness about climate change, and to be able to harness the power of football to spread this message is something we are very happy to do. Let’s all play our part in being the change,” said Bengaluru FC Head Coach, Mr Gerard Zaragoza.


“We are delighted to kick off ‘Match Day 2024’ in Bengaluru today. We sincerely thank the Government of Karnataka for giving us a chance to engage with girls at school in the state and BT Group for their unwavering support for this dynamic digital skills, sports project for girls. For the first time in the Government Education System in India, girls are playing football and learning integrated skills to solve for Climate Change at school. With a fierce focus on girls’ retention in school and transition from school to the sustainable enterprise of her choice, after she completes her education, she has the chance to become an entrepreneur who starts an enterprise that solves for Climate Change and creates jobs, we are already awe-inspired by the potential of girls and look forward to seeing what she achieves when she moves from school to the wider challenge of the city,” added Lisa Heydlauff, CEO, Going to School.

Going to School has also signed MoUs with the Government of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Goa to implement The Outdoor School for Girls program in Government Schools during school hours. They also run Experiential Business School Crash Courses for young women, age 18+, to be able to learn sustainable enterprise skills on site, outside in the city with start-up entrepreneurs. City Business Schools for Young Women, run outside like the Outdoor School, is part of their Youth Venture Fund program supported by J.P.Morgan. Once she completes a crash course, she can elect to begin researching a business that solves for Climate Change that she can pitch for support for start-up seed capital grants from Deutsche Bank.

The commitment to enable her to learn the skills she needs at school and to transition from school to sustainable enterprise of her choice solving for Climate Change, is a multi-partner initiative and underscoring girls and women’s decisive role in all of our futures.