The Harlequins Foundation has today launched Switch, a programme aimed at inspiring and helping girls to play rugby.
Switch, which is being piloted in Saint Richard Reynolds Catholic College, Waldegrave school (both Twickenham) and Grey Court school (Richmond) ahead of a full roll out in January 2017, will encourage girls that have not played rugby before to get involved in the sport.
The programme, once completed in the respective schools, will equip teachers with the foundation to create a sustainable platform for girls’ rugby. Following the pilot, Switch will be rolled out to secondary schools across the boroughs of Richmond, Kingston and Hounslow.
During the 2015/16 season the Harlequins Foundation and Community team delivered a number of girls only programmes, festivals and camps. These programmes were a great success reaching more than 500 girls across the year.
Switch builds on this experience and will be a more holistic programme, unique to Harlequins that will complement the rugby programmes already delivered in the local community.
The Switch programme supports a wider women and girls’ strategy that is being championed by Harlequins.
Leanne Riley, who has joined the Harlequins Foundation team as a Switch ambassador said: “I am privileged to be supporting the Harlequins Foundation and their girls’ programme, Switch.
“I have been playing rugby for 14 years and it’s fantastic to see that the Club is engaging girls in the local area. I am looking forward to the project formally starting and sharing my experience and love for the game.”