A new era in Indonesian Women's Rugby kicked off last Saturday, February 9, when sixteen young ladies from the Mama Sayang Orphanage (located at Jonggol, south of Jakarta) gathered at the Jakarta International School (JIS) for the inaugural training session of 2013. I helped conduct the session along with David Nye and we knew from the minute that we arrived that we were in for a good session as the girls were already bursting with enthusiasm.
Prior to kicking off the training session we had a quick chat with the girls and told them that whilst Rugby is a hard game, we were going to teach them a 'fun way' to learn Rugby thanks to a new pilot program called "Get Into Rugby" which is been trialed in a number of developing Rugby nations such as Indonesia. The girls certainly took on board the notion of having fun as their faces beamed with smiles from start to finish.
For many of the girls this was their first introduction to Rugby, however it was very interesting to observe how quickly they all picked up the simplest but most important skill of Rugby, namely 'catch and pass' whilst running straight. The great thing about the "Get Into Rugby" program is that it teaches children the basics of Rugby through a number a fun games over an eight-week period, such that at the end of that period, the children can play a game of Rugby 7's. Given the success of Saturday's first session, I am extremely confident that some of this group will go onto represent Indonesia in future international tournaments leading up to and including the 2015 South East Asian Games (SEAG) in Singapore.
Indonesian Rugby is very grateful to Britmindo who have donated a full training kit (shirts, shorts, socks, boots, mouth guards and backpacks) to each of the girls. These kits were presented by David Nye on behalf of Britmindo, to each of the girls at the end of the first training session. Mr. Mike Hilliard from Mama Sayang's said he and all the girls were most grateful to Britmindo for their kind support. Indonesian Rugby has also donated several balls to the girls so that they can practice after school each day out at Jonggol. The Union also plans to send a Rugby Development Officer out to the orphanage on a weekly basis in the not so distant future.
Indonesian Rugby is also most grateful to JIS for making a field available each Saturday so that these training sessions can take place. For those interested in joining in next Saturday as a player or coach then please feel free to be at Field 4 at JIS before the 10am start time (sessions finish at 12pm); best to use the back entrance to JIS off Jl. Simatupang.
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Indonesian Rugby has had a connection with Mama Sayang Orphanage through the Priscilla Hall Memorial Foundation (PHMF) since mid-2005 and the Union has helped raised much needed funds for PHMF and the orphanage during that time. For more information on Mama Sayang Orphanage please go to: http://www.mamasayang.org/