Thomas plays part in USA rugby mission

11 March 2016

Bath Rugby Foundation coach and Wales Women international Caryl Thomas has spoken about her recent rugby mission to the United States.

Thomas joined the several current professional players, ex-international coaches, Academy coaches and Community coaches from the Aviva Premiership Rugby clubs who have visited the United States in February and March.

As part of Premiership Rugby’s London Irish v Saracens game at the Red Bull Arena tomorrow, the British Council, in partnership with Premiership Rugby, have announced they will bring their award-winning international community outreach and youth development program, Try Rugby, to the United States.

Try Rugby was co-created and launched internationally by the British Council and Premiership Rugby in 2011 and is already achieving tremendous impact in supporting the growth of the game around the world.

“It's exciting times for rugby in America. It’s such a huge country but there are pockets of very passionate and well-established rugby communities which will only grow,” said Thomas. “With Premiership Rugby's Try Rugby USA initiative starting, it'll only increase the participation levels, access and awareness to the sport.”

Try Rugby USA is a capacity-building program for coaches, clubs and players designed to bring together, develop the skills, and inspire the US rugby community to build sustainable pathways to introduce the sport and its values to youth.

Hosted by British Council USA, Friends of the British Council USA and USA Rugby geographical unions and state-based rugby organizations, the coaches will be joined on the road by coaches from US-based Tiger Rugby. Together they will deliver a range of coach education sessions, coaching clinics for schools, universities, clubs, and youth programs, as well as linking with existing rugby based social projects like Play Rugby USA.

Activities will take place in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Washington, DC and Texas. These sites are a few of the geographic areas under consideration by British Council and Premiership Rugby as potential program site locations for the eventual launch of Try Rugby USA. Also under consideration are locations in the South East, Midwest, Mountain States and West.

Premiership Rugby’s Community and CSR Director Wayne Morris said “The game between London Irish and Saracens is a significant day in the history of Premiership Rugby and one that has taken a number of years and a lot of hard work to bring to fruition."

"There are ambitious plans to grow the game in the States and we are delighted to support these through our Try Rugby initiative which not only supports the development of the game but also demonstrates the social impact that can be delivered through rugby, we look forward to announcing more details of the activities and locations in the weeks leading up to the game.”

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