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Festival of Rugby inspires core values

A rugby festival has been held in Coventry using the core values of the game to help inspire youngsters.

Over 200 schoolchildren took to the outdoor pitches at Centre AT7 in Bell Green Road to compete in a fun-filled tag rugby tournament which looked to make a positive impact on the educational and social development of young people by helping them achieve their goals.

Four primary schools in the city took part in the event, which was organised as part of the Engage rugby initiative, including Cannon Park Primary School, Finham Primary School, Sir Frank Whittle Primary School and Wyken Croft Primary School.

The Engage rugby initiative, which is being led by Coventry Sports Foundation, brings local clubs, schools and sports groups together to deliver character education workshops and high-quality rugby coaching to educate and inspire young people.

The project focuses on using the core values of the game including teamwork, integrity, respect, discipline and enjoyment of the sport to improve the overall skills, confidence and attitudes of young people in school, at home and in the wider community.

The festival marked the end of a six-week pilot programme which saw every child learn about how the game’s values can be used to bring about success in every aspect of life.

Former Wasps and England player Paul Sackey attended as a special guest and offered advice, support and encouragement to the youngsters throughout the festival.

Stuart Davoile, from Engage, said:

The festival was about much more than just learning to play tag rugby. Although it is important for us to encourage young people to stay active we are also looking to teach them good morals and values that can be taken off the pitch and applied to everyday life.

Each school has just completed a six-week pilot programme which focused on using rugby and its values to develop healthy, confident and well-rounded young people who can become better individuals by encompassing these positive qualities.

The children were given access to high-quality coaching alongside values-based learning allowing them to develop not only their physical abilities but their social and educational abilities too.

To celebrate the success of the project, every child was asked to share the value they wanted to promote with the whole of Coventry. These were then attached to 300 helium balloons and released into the sky. It really was a reminder that the sky’s the limit for these youngsters.