Engaging school children with RWC 2015
School children across England will get a chance to be part of the excitement of Rugby World Cup 2015 with the formation of a new youth partnership.
England Rugby 2015, the Rugby Football Union and the Youth Sport Trust are developing a programme targeting secondary school children with a range of activities during the build-up to the tournament.
The programme will include various components aimed at engaging youngsters with RWC 2015.
Young people across England will be selected to become School Rugby Ambassadors and will take a leading role in promoting rugby and RWC 2015 with their peers at school by organising events to mark the important tournament milestones. This programme will be formally launched at the Youth Sport Trust’s national conference in February 2014.
A group of teachers drawn from across England has begun work this month to develop a teaching resource pack that will be available from mid 2014. The new resources will help teachers and students use rugby as a tool right across school and celebrate the sport in the run up to and during RWC 2015.
Working with the Youth Sport Trust to identify local school pupils to welcome people to the tournament, this will be another opportunity for young people to learn about the history and culture of the teams, and bring a flavour of their local area to Rugby World Cup 2015.
England Rugby 2015 Chief Executive Debbie Jevans said: “Through this partnership we want to involve and engage young people with RWC 2015 and help spread the excitement around the country as we build towards the tournament. We want them to play an important role in welcoming the world to this proud rugby nation and this initiative will give an excellent opportunity to fans, players and visitors to interact with schools and the local community.”
RWC 2015 a catalyst for growth
England Rugby 2015 Ambassador Will Greenwood added: “I want RWC 2015 to act as a catalyst to get more young people involved in rugby and this partnership is an excellent way to help spread the word. I hope that it will spur on all young people involved to find out about what their local rugby club can offer in terms of a community and a support base.”
RFU Rugby Development Director Steve Grainger said: “We are very pleased to announce that we will be working alongside the Youth Sport Trust and England Rugby 2015 on such an exciting project to help us raise awareness of rugby union in schools and inspire more young people to play the game.
“Our aim is to help them feel part of the excitement that hosting RWC 2015 will bring to this country and to have a real connection to the sport in the build-up to the tournament. The RFU has a strong relationship with the Youth Sport Trust and this is an opportunity to involve them and their considerable experience of working with schools to change young people’s lives through sport.”
John Steele, Chief Executive of the Youth Sport Trust, added: “The country is enjoying unprecedented success when it comes to hosting major sporting events, and RWC 2015 presents another exciting opportunity to inspire young people through sport. This partnership will see the three organisations sharing knowledge and expertise, and ensuring that young people across the country feel part of what will be a very special sporting occasion.”
With less than two years to go until rugby’s showpiece event kicks off at Twickenham on 18 September 2015, there is already a real buzz around the tournament at schools across England. RWC 2015 will be a spectacular six-week celebration which will inspire people across the world to play and support the game, and while the stars of the game create the magic on the pitch, youngsters from the host nation will have a huge role to play off it and are set to create some unforgettable memories of their own.