Schuylkill River RFC, Philadelphia Women’s RFC, and the North Philadelphia Nomads RFC are proud to announce that they have teamed up to run a summer rugby program at the NE Frankford Boys and Girls Club. The teams had already been doing monthly sessions with the Club’s kids, who are in kindergarten through sixth grade, so stepping up and doing a more ambitious weekly program was a logical next step. The ten week program sees coaches, players, and administrators from all three teams join forces to give back to the community and help develop the game on the grassroots level.
Schuylkill River President Dave Codell, who is also a coach and Board member of the Narberth Otters youth rugby program, was quick to credit the other teams. “Philadelphia Women’s RFC is known throughout the area for their stellar play on the field and for their level of commitment to doing community service work off the field. We are thankful that they invited us to participate in their flag rugby program with the Boys and Girls Club back in December and for the fact that we all have the opportunity to run such a great program together. The Nomads, and their incredible coaching staff, also deserve a ton of credit for the work that they have put in to grow the game and to serve as mentors for the young athletes that they are developing on a daily basis. The most credit however, goes to staff of the Boys and Girls Club itself for the amazing work they do day in and day out.”
“It’s all about the kids,” added Nomad coach, and Schuylkill player, James Brunson. “When you give some of your time and energy to put a smile on a kid’s face it’s extremely rewarding. Rugby is a game that I love so I’m looking forward to helping grow that same love for the game with these kids over the summer.”
Philadelphia Women’s RFC Captain Kate Hallinan, who has also been involved in rugby programs at other youth organizations such as Philly Girls in Motion, echoed many of the sentiments expressed by the other volunteers and said “Community service is a big part of my team’s identity and we really enjoy working with these kids. We’ve been going back and forth with Schuylkill and the Nomads since December to figure out a way that we could all work together on a larger scale so it’s great to have this opportunity.”
Schuylkill River Board Member Ryan McHugh is another of the volunteers for this program and had this to say, “I grew up right around the corner from the Boys and Girls Club so I’m pumped to have an opportunity to give back to my community and help teach these kids the greatest sport on earth. When Rafiq from the Club asked us about doing extra sessions over the summer it was a no brainer for me.”
The Club is anticipating that as many as 130 kids will participate in their summer program and the Club’s hours are expanding from 15 hours per week in the school year to 40 hours per week in the summer which makes this a great opportunity for the teams to lend a hand where it’s needed and help provide these kids with a summer that they’ll never forget.