More Than Just a Game – South African Kids Participate in an Inspiring Rugby Tournament
SARLA (South Africa Rugby Legends) and Cell C are currently involved in an exciting rugby initiative for underprivileged children that is also supported by the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation and the Monaco Rugby Federation. The initiative involves bringing young rugby enthusiasts from the Western Cape to Monaco to participate in the international Sainte Dévote Rugby sevens Tournament. It gives the children a unique opportunity to experience unknown cultures, enjoy the spirit of teamwork to its fullest and learn about themselves and their ability to perform in a new and unfamiliar environment, while playing rugby. The Sainte Dévote event is the perfect environment to meet and tackle these challenges, as it is all about positive cultural exchange, tolerance, fair play, and collaborative group dynamics. The tournament, which is the 7th of its kind and the 3rd for South African youngsters, is due to start in early March 2017.
Gavin Varejes - Supporting SA Rugby
President of SARLA Gavin Varejes has been involved with South African sports development for several years. He believes that the benefits of rugby go beyond the obvious physical advantages of the game. By working together as a team, players learn about solidarity and fellowship, team spirit and sportsmanship, he explains. Varejes is thrilled about the initiative and hopes that the children will use the valuable experiences they collect throughout the trip and tournament to grow and achieve success in the future. He is immensely grateful for the sponsorship received from Cell C, a leading South African mobile phone service provider. Through their on-going generosity, initiatives like this are made possible. Stefan Terblanche, CEO of SARLA is also excited about sending the 12 youngsters to Monaco for the tournament. He sees it as a great opportunity for the children and for SARLA to turn distant aspirations into unforgettable concrete experiences.
'Wake Up' with SARLA
Founded in 2001, SARLA is an organisation launched with the dual goal of developing rugby in SA and representing the interests of retired professional rugby players, known as ‘Legends’. The organisation runs various programmes geared for developing the sport and making it more accessible to underprivileged members of the community who have traditionally been deprived of structured training opportunities. SARLA’s main grassroots programme is named ‘Vuka’ which means ‘Wake Up’ in the isiZulu and Xhosa languages. Vuka gives over 2,200 underprivileged children from more than 65 Western Cape schools access to various rugby events and regular rugby training clinics run by professional coaches and the 'Legends' themselves.
Gavin Varejes is the CEO of Richmark Holdings LTD and the President of SARLA (South African Rugby Legends association)