For three groups of young men the 20th May was no ordinary day. That was the day they were part of something bigger – an opportunity to represent their country and prove to themselves that the journey they had embarked on was well worth it.
On the 20th May 2017 Homeless Rugby CIC held the first Homeless Rugby Cup, three teams (England, Scotland and Wales) descended upon the Sixways stadium, home to the Worcester Warriors, to battle it out for the title. No one envied the referees that day (though an unenviable job at the best of times!) as pace was quick, adrenaline was free-flowing and emotions were high! The players had been looking forward to this, the pinnacle of their training, for some time and they didn’t disappoint the crowds, some of who travelled down from Scotland that morning to be there to support!
The majority of those participating have been affected by homelessness, a fact which does not define them, but unites them together as teammates, creating a strong and unique bond. Players throughout their rugby journeys including the road to Sixways are keen to support and enable their teammates, a trait common across rugby teams. Many of the players having faced difficult challenges in their lives and use rugby, their new community and their team’s as part of the solution to help overcome these.
The teams were made up of the players from programmes in Worcester, Glasgow and Newport and the crème of the crop were successful in being selected to represent their countries on the day. After three intense and exciting games England came out on top after fighting off some stiff competition from their rivals
With more teams on the horizon, the competition looks set to get bigger and tougher next year!
Verity Robinson, Director
Homeless Rugby CIC
To find out more on upcoming events and how you can support Homeless Rugby CIC going forward visit www.homelessrugby.org or follow us on Twitter at @HomelessRugby.