By FELIX MALUNGA –
CONFEDERATION of African Rugby (CAR) development officer for Eastern and Southern region, Erick Situma has been assigned to spearhead the launch of an International Rugby Board (IRB) project in Zambia this monthend.
The IRB Get Into Rugby Project, which has been unveiled by the global governing body, is aimed at helping the growth of the sport among all national affiliates.
Zambia Rugby Union (ZRU) president, Martin Musunka said the project would be conducted at the Olympic Youth Development Centre (OYDC) in Lusaka from February 28 to March 4.
Musunka said in a statement released in Ndola yesterday that participants, who will include ZRU officials, coaches, teachers, women rugby officials and district coordinators, would be drawn from across the nation.
Musunka said Situma, who would jet into Zambia on February 28, would be assisted by ZRU’s head of secretariat, Kampata Banda and midlands rugby coordinator, Jeff Muwele.
“The IRB Get Into Rugby programme is part of the new IRB strategy to support the growth of the Game globally in partnership with member unions which is a central part of the IRB initiative to grow rugby as the sport is readmitted to the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016,” Musunka said.
He said the aim of the programme was to encourage players of all ages to try, play and stay in rugby with a target of attracting at least one million new players and 15,000 new coaches and referees in the next four years across the globe.
“As Zambia, we shall set our meaningful target as we implement the programme. The Get into Rugby project, will have the plan that will promote the values of the Game and ensure children are encouraged to try rugby in a safe and progressive environment,” Musunka said.
He said the programme would be in three phases and would be delivered by IRB and ZRU educated coaches, teachers and development officers.
“The primary focus is to introduce children to the principles of the game and allow them to experience rugby with a coach/teacher, using the resources and materials provided by the IRB,” Musunka added.