In October 2018, Transition Through Rugby course graduate Paul Willison launched Rugby Active, a fun and inclusive rugby programme for children of all ages and abilities to enjoy In School, After School or at Holiday Camps.
Paul was recently asked by the chairman at Telford Hornets and Staffordshire Rebels rugby club to help out with a Mixed Ability Rugby Tournament. A great opportunity to reach a new audience and get more young people involved with rugby.
We caught up with Paul to find out more…
Where did the idea for Rugby Active come from?
I was keen to continue coaching kids rugby. I noticed that there was no provision for rugby clubs in the Derby area. Most were football and multi sports.
How did your recent Mixed Ability Rugby Tournament go?
This event was a move in a different direction for Rugby Active and the response from all who attended was really positive. Bob Goodwin, another TTR course graduate, came and helped out on the day as a coach too which was great.
What does the future look like for Rugby Active?
Hopefully the programme takes off and we can get full booking for our half term and summer camps. Being mobile we are actively looking to move around the Midlands to more rugby clubs. In fact, if anyone out there has any locations around the Derbyshire area, please get in touch with us for more information.
How did the Transition Through Rugby course help?
The course is great. It gives you all the qualifications you need to get started at a club. The rest is up to you. I started coaching a Ladies team in Ireland and have now been head coach at Derby University for a year. Rugby gives you a circle of new friends which is important after being away from your hometown for so long while serving. Rugby for Heroes has also been great in lending the inflatable pitch (pictured above) which the kids love and really adds to the atmosphere.
What would you say to someone considering applying for the TTR course?
Do it! If you have a love for rugby and are interested in coaching then it’s a win, win. Everyone involved in the charity is great and I have attended many fundraising events with Rugby for Heroes in recent times and hopefully more this year.
To find out more about Rugby Active, visit the website here.
And to help Paul spread the word far and wide about this great kids rugby programme, follow Rugby Active on Facebook @rugbyactive.co.uk