Berthin in Comoros – Remember, last year Berthin Rafalimanana made its very first visit on the Comoros. Our Regional Development Officer had then organized coaches training level 1, referees training and had launched the Get Into Rugby project.
This time upon his arrival, Berthin quickly realized the extent of the task awaiting him. Rugby didn’t grow so much in his absence and despite all the willingness of president Soilihi Moumini, there is yet neither tournaments nor activities on the islands.
Far from discouraging our brave RDO, the Malagasy gave it all he could to make some progress happen. The training he went to deliver this time was well organized and prepared and gathered motivated trainees, ready to work for the union and the Comoran rugby. A good point !
Berthin took advantage of his visit to review the Get Into Rugby’s situation. Three locations have now been identified for the practice of rugby, Nioumadza, Mkazi and Vouvouni. It is on the last one that the entire team organized a festival to initiate children to the oval ball with 39 boys and 8 educators. The project “I also play referee” was also launched with 3 educators and 3 children and gave a rather positive first impression . The girls were not outdone and played rugby during a PE in a religious school which Berthin was able to attend.
To close this journey, Rafalimanana visited the president of the committee of Sports. He was reminded that chess, badminton and rugby were to this day still not recognized by the Olympic National Committee which is slowing down the development of sport on the Main Island as well as on Moheli and Anjouan.
Finally by the end of his trip, Berthin was convinced that development program for children is the way to go for this union to grow the game. Today, rugby still suffers from a bad reputation in this Muslim country but will the values of this sport succeed in exceeding the prejudices ?