Thousands of rugby members who have endured catastrophic weather events in recent months will soon be offered a helping hand through a new fundraising initiative.
The Australian Rugby Foundation together with Rugby Australia, the Australian Sports Foundation and the Classic Wallabies have launched the Rugby Aid Appeal.
Fundraising efforts will go towards rugby clubs or members who have experienced major climatic events such as drought or bushfires and need help rebuilding clubhouses or replacing equipment and kits.
Rugby AU is currently undertaking research to pinpoint which rugby communities have been affected and will look to make contact with them in the coming weeks.
Executive Director at the Australian Rugby Foundation Peter Murphy said: ‘’Our priority is to make sure people feel connected and supported at their local rugby club and can start the 2020 season on a much better note.’’
The Classic Wallabies will also be hitting the ground in several weather-affected towns over the coming months to deliver coaching clinics and assist clubs with fundraising.
The first pitstop is Coonamble in New South Wales on April 18 where locals have struggled through an eight-year drought.
General Manager of the Classic Wallabies Morgan Turinui said: ‘’Ultimately, we want to help lift the community spirit and remind those doing it tough that we’re all here for them.‘
’We know rugby has the power to shift peoples’ mindsets so we’re hoping to bring some much-needed relief to these regions.’’
The Rugby Aid Appeal bucket has already started filling up following a successful fundraising drive at the 2020 HSBC Sydney 7s.
Almost $50,000 was raised across the two-day tournament through the ‘Try Time’ campaign in which $1,500 was donated from Rugby Australia, World Rugby and ASICS each time an Australian Sevens scored a try.
Those wanting to contribute to the appeal can make a tax-deductible donation here.