Last week Mark Pawsey MP hosted an awards ceremony recognising the top outreach programmes run by professional rugby clubs. Mark welcomed representatives from clubs’ community departments, alongside their local charity and volunteer partners, to the Premiership Rugby Awards in Westminster.
Winners included Bristol Rugby's Eagle Project - which is designed to introduce school girls to rugby - and Jeremy Bristoe, who runs a tag rugby team for disabled youngsters at Witney Wolves.
This is the 10th year the parliamentary All Party Rugby Group has supported the Awards, in conjunction with Aviva Premiership Rugby.
After the ceremony Mark said: “These Awards just go to show what a difference rugby clubs can make. We should all give our congratulations to these grassroots projects which are keeping the game alive in communities around the UK - and changing lives at the same time.
“Long after the England World Cup 2015 has rolled out of town, these projects will be rugby’s legacy. As the Parliamentary Ambassador for the World Cup, and an enthusiast of the game, I will continue to do all I can to ensure the event is a great success. It is imperative that we make the most of the opportunities the tournament will bring, as we are doing in our local area, and encourage more people to participate in the sport of rugby.
"The Awards have been a good reminder of some of the great things that's in our game and what helps to run our game. What engages with people are community activities and to hear the stories of the people that go out their way to work with so many different people and different backgrounds, and dedicate their life to helping others, is very inspirational.”