Students from Tiverton High School have been taking part in rugby union sessions at the school with the Exeter Chiefs community team as part of a national initiative.
Project Rugby was launched by England Rugby and Premiership Rugby to help communities engage with rugby union and benefit from its core values. The 12-week project sets out to “increase levels of resilience and confidence among participants, as well as helping people to feel more connected to their local community”.
Simon Morrell, a head of house and sports teacher at Tiverton High School, believes the project will have a major impact on its participants. He said: “Rugby as a sport is about co-operation and trust, and these are important values to learn for developing youngsters.
“This a rare and welcome opportunity for the boys and girls invited to be involved with professionals at the top of the national game. Whether or not they continue to play or watch rugby, they will come away from this programme with some important new lifeskills that complement the rounded education we’re providing at the school.”
The sessions are led by Chiefs' Community Development coach and former Cornish Pirates professional Richard Bright (pictured with some of the students).
Exeter Chiefs are one of 14 national clubs delivering Project Rugby within regional communities. Steve Grainger, Rugby Development Director at England Rugby, said: “Having all 14 Premiership Rugby partner clubs actively engaging with these communities gives us a fantastic reach across the country and we’re looking forward to seeing new people participating in the game. Rugby has a unique ability to increase self-confidence and well-being as well as bringing people together and we want as many people as possible to benefit from the sport.”