Young people from Foundation inclusion programmes came together for their first Mixed Ability Rugby Session on Monday night before playing at half time in the A League fixture against Harlequins on the pitch at The Rec.
Over 20 children and young adults with special educational needs took part in the afternoon session. They came from B&NES and Wiltshire, having previously taken part in the Foundation’s Hi5! Sports Clubs or Wiltshire Rising Stars.
The children and young adults were coached on various rugby skills, such as agility, tackling and kicking before putting their new found skills to the test in a game of touch rugby. For many participants, this was their first time playing. Having whet their appetite for the sport, they then got to enjoy the A League Bath United vs Harlequins match before showcasing their skills on the pitch.
The Foundation Inclusion team help young people to tackle barriers and create memories. For the children and young adults and their families who enjoyed watching the Bath United vs. Harlequins, we did just that.
Sharon Ratcliffe, whose son Finlay took part in the session said, “Thank you for a fabulous day, we all had a great time! It was so lovely to see Fin interacting so well and giving everything a good go, making new friends and learning new skills. He got so much out of the day. He loved watching the match and it was a big thrill for both him and us for him to have the opportunity to play on the pitch at half time. All with the added bonus of a beautiful day weather wise!”
Becks Toan, Inclusion Coach said, “It was fantastic to see all the children and young adults come along to the Foundation’s first Mixed Ability Rugby event. It was particularly special to see the smiles on the faces of children and young adults involved. Its exciting to think this is the first event of many as we are organising more for May half-term and the summer holidays. All the children and young adults involved were buzzing when walking of the pitch. This is the start of an exciting future for Bath Rugby Foundation Mixed Ability”
Bath Rugby Foundation are organising more Junior Mixed Ability Rugby camps half terms and summer breaks in B&NES and Wiltshire. We are also looking to create an adult Mixed Ability Rugby team by linking with a local rugby club. Our ambition is to organise fixtures against other Mixed Ability Rugby teams. Mixed ability rugby encourages social inclusion by mixing able-bodied volunteers and coaches who act as helpers to guide players with learning difficulties on the pitch. Mixed Ability Rugby is not about classifying levels of ability rugby of each participant and separating players with learning difficulties into tiers, the main focus of mixed ability rugby is to emphasise rugby as an inclusive sport for all players.
Anyone interested in hearing more about Bath Rugby Foundation Mixed Ability Rugby or would like to hear about upcoming sessions, please contact Becks Toan.
Mobile: 07721 373042