At Play Rugby, we pride ourselves on being a youth development organization, we don’t just focus on the on-field performance, but also the off-field success.

Over four weeks our Communications and Youth Development intern, Gabrielle Tutheridge, has created and conducted four amazing workshops, which inspire our under 18 academy girls to go forward and create a better future for themselves.

Gabbie dives into future-thinking topics each week, to support the growth of our girls off-field. Her first workshop was about creating a ‘Game Plan’. This involved the girls finding their studying flow, to help them engage and learn their exam topics. Gabbie also explained why ‘just starting’ is the hardest part of studying, so planning study and getting out of your distraction zone was another topic approached in this workshop.

The week after was ‘Switch On’, a workshop about self-motivation, setting and achieving goals, and stress management. This was a popular workshop among the girls who participated, which had them all discussing the benefits of stress management and why it was so important especially leading into their exams and going into college.

Using Play Rugby’s values in action, as a guideline, the girls could immediately understand the importance of the topics, to take them off the field and integrate them into a classroom approach.

The following workshops, ‘Go Forward’ and ‘Get There’ were situated around getting ‘job ready’. By this, Gabbie sets up a platform for the girls to share their resumes and cover letters with her, and she provides feedback and a second opinion before the girls send them off to recruiters.

After each workshop, the girls filled out a survey to ensure that each week, the workshops improved and their feedback was taken into consideration. One of the girls stated that the ‘Get There’ workshop was “very helpful, especially because we conducted mock job interviews and I had no idea how nerve-racking it was and how unprepared I am to sell myself.” Another girl stated in the survey that, “the most significant takeaway from the workshop was learning about cover letters, and defining your strengths and weaknesses.”

The girls expressed that all the workshops were very beneficial to them, and 100% of the results in the workshop surveys showed that they taught the girls more than they would learn in school, about getting prepared, motivated and job ready.

The average high school graduation rate within the communities supported by our programs is under 50%, but 100% of our seniors in our Academy program graduate, and enroll in college. Workshops like these play a huge role in creating an environment where our players can learn the skills they need to gain success in their future.