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05 Sep 2017

Championship rugby clubs launch grassroots initiative
BY Tom Walker

The scheme will see players from each club go out and help their local communities.

The scheme will see players from each club go out and help their local communities.

Professional clubs playing in the second tier of English rugby have signed up to a grassroots rugby development programme which will see a selection of players from each club go out and help their local communities.

The Supporters’ Supporter scheme will see Championship clubs announce – across social media – the dates and times that players will be available to help out with a local project.

All club fans are encouraged to make their case via social media for the cause they feel is most in need of help.

The clubs will then choose a project to help with from all of the responses and their players will get involved.

Funded by the Championship’s title sponsor, Greene King brewery, the Supporters’ Supporter scheme will run throughout the season and is part of a wider strategy to grow rugby union at grassroots level.

The Supporters’ Supporter campaign was launched as England Rugby and Comic Relief announced a total of 11 projects which will be awarded the first set of Try for Change small grants.

Aimed at supporting smaller charities, community groups and grassroots rugby clubs in England, the grants offer projects up to £10,000 to support the valuable work they are doing to improve lives through rugby.

More than 40 organisations, including 17 rugby clubs, applied for a small grant, with 11 projects ultimately being awarded funding.

The successful projects are located across England and use rugby and its core values as a tool to improve and support the lives of marginalised and disadvantaged people.

One of the 11 projects to receive funding – by 3 Pillars CIC – will see rugby being used in prisons to reduce reoffending.

"We have already successfully piloted our rugby academy course with young men in HMP Wormwood Scrubs in North West London and the Try for Change grant will enable us to deliver new courses in further prisons," said Mike Crofts, CEO of 3 Pillars.

"Our project emphasises the value of teamwork and sportsmanship through rugby, helping people achieve their full potential."



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