Challenging perceptions with Project Rugby
We launched Project Rugby, a joint initiative between the RFU and Premiership Rugby, designed to increase participation in the game amongst young people from traditionally underrepresented groups.
The diverse targets for this project were to engage Black, Asian & Minority Ethnic people, those from low socio-economic backgrounds and disabled people. Project Rugby aims to tackle existing perceptions of the game, positioning rugby as a sport for anyone regardless of background, ability or gender.
With an initial target to reach over 10,000 participants by Summer 2018, we needed to launch with a bang to ensure key stakeholders, potential participants and their support networks were aware of Project Rugby and its potential to provide participants with essential life skills such as increased levels of resilience and confidence.
The launch event, attended by BBC Sport, Sky Sport News, TalkSport, PA and Daily Express , took place at Sale Sharks’ AJ Bell Stadium with players from all three target groups playing rugby games coached by Sale Sharks’ first team players. The campaign video created by Matta was unveiled at the event as Sales Sharks’ and England International Denny Solomena, a Project Rugby ambassador, spoke to the media.
The programme has exceeded its first-year target of engaging 10,000 participants and over 1,000 children from previously under-represented communities now play regularly at local grassroots rugby clubs.
pieces of coverage
participants by 2018
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Thomas Pedersen-Smith, Development & Education Manager, EHF
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