Who would have thought that life as a teacher could be so hectc?! The additional responsibilities given to Deena and myself other than teaching, keep us running around all day at school. Lesson planning is a struggle when Deena’s public speaking skills in constant demand, and I have been elected form tutor of the President’s daughter’s class! But we are relishing the challenge!
The weekend’s coaching was not as successful as usual. We arranged to give G.S Shyogwe and St Joseph’s, Kabgayi another training session each in the afternoon and visit a club team, Pumas in the morning. We mistakenly thought that the Puma team was just off the main road on the way to Gitarama. However, it was a full 10km which exhausted both our bodies and our purse. We arrived in Gitarama (the nearest town to both schools) with the equivalent of 50p in our pockets and fifty US dollars. With nowhere to change money we were nearly marooned and were forced to turn back to Kigali to re-organise these sessions.
However, it was great to meet the Puma players, a group of 20 enthusiasts with a 20 year old coach, Vedaste (a former player in my school team). Vedaste started these teams on his own inclination, based on his enjoyment of the game and on the request of the players. They had one ball, extremely worn, not a pair of boots between them or a pair of rugby shorts. However, their enthusiasm was inspirational. Between them, the players have never seen a game of rugby on TV and the coach has seen only the one game I showed in 2001 when initially trying to introduce rugby.
Next week there is a University game between Butare University and a Burundi Univerisity, demonstrating further progress of the game in the region. Deena is the referee and I hope to teach some rules to the young coaches on the sidelines.
We’ve been a week in Kigali now, and after several hectic days of meetings (mostly with Celestin of the Rwandan Rugby Federation, but also an unexpected cup of tea with the British Ambassador) we finally saw some rugby!
We attended a very muddy training session with a club team in Kigali and were impressed with the numbers at training and commitment to full contact! Luckily our arrival co-incided with the start of the 2007 League and this weekend we travelled to Butare for Deena to referee the University team, The Grizzlies, v Kigali based team, Lion De Fer. A close encounter for the first 40 mins saw many attacking raids from both sides repelled with courageous defence. Eventually sheer weight of possession from set piece saw the Lions score 3 un-answered tries. The ref also survived despite the heat, altitude and well concealed line markings!
We are now dressed in our ‘smart’ clothes (mostly donated from the generous League girls!) as we head to a meeting with the Minister of Sport. We hope he will take an interest in our three month plan and assist us to promote rugby.
We are finally at the end of the TRDT tour to Uganda and it has been great!
The week involved two sessions of coaching a day in various schools.
The coaching experience was tiring but very rewarding. All the kids were training in full school uniform (including leather shoes) and picked up the skills very quickly.
The week culminated in a tournament at Junja Rugby club (AKA our campsite) and was a massive success. There were 8 teams involved, each wearing excellent new kit and were highly competetive. It was amazing what was acheived with a relatively short space of time and large numbers of kids compared to limited resources. This has really given us a shot in the arm and shown us what is possible. We hope to have inspired a passion for rugby which will long continue in these children.
We couldn’t bask in the glory of this experence for too long as we were rushing back to Kampala the next day to participate in a 7s tournament. Oh what an experience-us and 10 Great Britain rugby league girls playing against seasoned African 7s experts! We won the collisions and got hammered on the counter attack with pace! A great day none the less!
Tomorrow, we are on the bus and into Rwanda…(only a short 8 hour hop!)
Emma and Deena
16/09/2013 Coming Shortly FoRR National Schools Finals Tournament –
Regional teams announced:
To all of those people who have donated money directly or through our awesome fundraising folks lately. This is what your money went towards:
WE TAKE CARE of the transport for all of the teams listed below to travel to Kigali so they can compete in the Rwandan schools’ national final. The players, teachers and coaches’ transport plus resources for the day of rugby all get taken care of by FoRR. You can see exactly where your money is in action and creating chances for these guys to play. We should also mention that we took care of the 7 regional tournaments in the lead up and selection series as well. More than 40 school teams got the chance to vie for the national title. Can’t wait to see who comes out on top of the whole competition….
Thank you so much!!
|1.Transport (ET MUKINGI-Ruhango)|
|2.Transport (ACEJ KARAMA- Muhanga)|
|3.Transport (E.S MULINDI-Gicumbi)|
|4. Transport (E.S APEMU RULI-Gakenke)|
|5.Transport (EAV KABUTARE-Huye)|
|6.Transport (Lycee APICUR-Musanze|
Follow face book to watch the lead up and tournament unfold.
21/08/2013 FoRR wins a 2013 OPSCAR
FoRR has been lucky enough to be selected as one of three charities by the Accenture Operations Community in their annual OPSCAR vote. Last year Accenture employees helped the Operations Community raise almost £15k for very worthwhile causes. They actively seek to recognise outstanding charities that represent great causes and then seek to support them with a financial contribution. FoRR hopes to continue delivering practical assistance to the rural and youth communities in Rwanda and is delighted to have been recognised through this inspiring program.