WASPS are holding a free half-term rugby camp in a bid to keep girls engaged in the sport as they move through their teenage years.
The Gallagher Premiership club will be hosting the coaching camp on Wednesday, February 23 at Birmingham Exiles RFC.
Women’s rugby is growing fast across the country and is one of the Rugby Football Union’s (RFU) fastest developing sectors.
And its upward trajectory is set to continue with the Rugby World Cup for women being held later this year and England’s Red Roses topping the world rankings.
The sport is also growing at a regional level with Wasps Women training weekly at the Wasps Elite Performance and Innovation Centre in Henley-in-Arden having recently played a fixture at the Coventry Building Society Arena.
It is the second time Wasps have hosted a free half-term rugby camp for women and girls rugby, with the inaugural camp in October attracting more than 60 players on the day.
The camp is run for young people from age 12 to 18 and is led by Wasps’ community coaches whilst Senior Wasps players will also be on hand at the camp to give an insight into the world of professional rugby.
Wasps are working with community rugby clubs across Coventry, Warwickshire and the wider Midlands area to support the development of junior girls programmes.
Meg Varley, Community Rugby Coach at Wasps, said: “It’s vital that as a sport we continue to engage young girls and show that there is a pathway for them to continue playing as they become young adults.
“When I was growing up in Coventry it was really difficult to find a girls team that I could play for, after surpassing the age limit for playing in mixed-teams.
“I had to travel further afield to play the sport I loved and for many that travel can be a step too far and can lead young girls to move away from rugby.
“That has certainly changed in recent years and we are seeing more and more women’s teams formed across the Midlands.”
Ian Isham, Head of Community at Wasps, added: “It’s a very exciting time for the women’s game at the moment here in England and to have the incredible Red Roses leading on the world stage is something that is trickling down to lower levels of the game and giving young girls something to aspire to.
“We are committed at Wasps to expanding the junior girls game and by putting on free camps like this we hope to build strong relationships with rugby clubs in the community too.
“The feedback we had from the first free camp in October was overwhelmingly positive and we are looking forward to building on those strong foundations in February half-term.”
The camp has been made possible due to support from Wasps’ Official Club Partner RSK, a global sustainability, environmental and engineering firm.
Jessica Sparkes, Group Communications Director at RSK, added: “As part of our partnership with Wasps, we are committed to supporting important community projects.
“We sponsored the first free girls rugby camp held by Wasps and it was a huge success. We are delighted to continue supporting the delivery of this programme.”
To find out more information about the free half-term rugby camp at Birmingham Exiles RFC visit www.wasps.co.uk/camps
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