The three Rugby nations (Benin, Ghana and Togo) assembled in Ghana for the Rugby Africa Regional Challenge (RARC) Group West 1 tournament has embarked on a historic outreach programme dubbed by the Ghana Eagles as the “RARC Legacy Project”.
The project was initiated by the Ghana National Rugby Squad, the Ghana Eagles , as their selfless contribution towards spreading the values of Rugby to Ghanaian youth.
The captain of the Ghana Eagles, Michael Ako (Ako) Wilson, said that few people in Ghana know about Rugby, let alone about the character building values of Rugby.
The first leg of the RARC Legacy Project was completed on Monday 1 May 2017 when the Benin Squirrels (Les Écureuils) conducted a Get Into Rugby session that explained and demonstrated the basics of Rugby to a group of school children in Madina.
Even though the rains and school holidays did not help a lot, the enthusiastic kids and the Benin Squirrels thoroughly enjoyed the programme.
The leader of the Benin delegation, M Roger Allagbe, said that the Ghana Eagles’ project is laudable and worthwhile perpetuating.
“Yesterday was beautiful. At first, there was a hesitation because of the rain, but when the kids started playing, they became more and more interested.
I think this kind of program is purposeful and must be perpetuated because it will make young people want to play rugby in the future,” Allagbe said.
The second leg of the project involved the Ghana Eagles accompanied by Mr Charles Yapo, Rugby Afrique Development Officer – West and RARC Citing Commissioner.
The Legacy Project Rugby clinic was conducted at the Senior Correctional Centre, a juvenile correction institute under the Ghana Prisons Service (GPS) on Tuesday 3 May 2017. The Centre was previously known as the “Borstal Institute for Juveniles”.
The centre is a correction centre for people who are under 18 years old and have been convicted of criminal or civil offenses. The period that a convict spends in the centre is aimed at reforming him or her so they can fit into society easily after their stay at the centre.
For security reasons photography of the youth at the facility was not allowed.
Charles Yapo said, “It was a unique experience for the children. We showed them principles of the Game Rugby and I talked to them about the values of Rugby, namely respect, solidarity, integrity, passion, and discipline.”
Yapo continued to say that they focused on respect and discipline that is such an integral part of building character.
“They loved it. The donation of foodstuff the team made was highly appreciated by the educators,” Yapo said.
The Ghana Eagles donated a parcel of foodstuff consisting rice, water and tomatoes as a sign of good will towards the Centre.
The last leg of the RARC Legacy Project will be conducted by the Togolese national Rugby team at James Town. More detail to follow.
Today, Wednesday 3 May, the the Benin Squirrels will face their rivals, Togo, at the Accra Sports Stadium with kickoff scheduled for 3 pm. The Ghana Eagles will do battle against Togo in the final of three international matches of the Rugby Africa Regional Challenge (RARC) Group West 1 tournament.
A beer tent sponsored by CLUB Lager will be available at the venue, and entry is free.
Besides for Rugby Afrique other Ghana companies who sponsored and contributed to the project include the Gino brands, Interplast, Golden Tulip Accra, eVerpure and iQmenn. Media partners such as the Daily Guide, Modern Ghana, Peace FM, 3News and others also support the tournament.
Credit : Ghana Rugby