Thursday 25 October 2018

Balkan Rugby Europe Regional visit

Rugby Europe organises successfully a first and revitalised Regional Meeting in Croatia, where 6 Unions discussed key topics for the growth and development of the Game in the area.

October 17th was the day when the first Rugby Europe Regional Meeting took place. Hosted by the Croatian Union, the meeting was organised in the Village of Miljana close to Zagreb, and 6 Unions gathered to discuss specific topics about their development and growth, as well as common ideas about the future of the Game in Europe. The 17 participants from Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia and Kosovo worked during the day with Rugby Europe and World Rugby staff Jason Lewis, Daniel Mitrea and Jose Gorrotxategui sharing their participation, training and education, player pathway and governance examples with each other, and providing and receiving feedback about their plans for the future and their current challenges. 

World Rugby Regional Services Manager Jason Lewis said: "It was a very positive visit for Rugby Europe/World Rugby and for the participating Unions. I am sure we can build on this and create a collaborative group that can really assist development in the region.”

Some of the outcomes of this meeting include a new Training and Education workforce plan in the region, with local expertise and a possible new Education Hub, an increase cooperation between Governance in the Unions, a review in age-grade competitions to make it more cost effective and more aligned with their own development plans or the organisation of a new regional Get Into Rugby festival where all Unions could take place as part of the suite of activities that Unions can provide to their clubs. 

About Get Into Rugby in the Region, Rugby Europe’s participation and retention manger said Jose Gorrotxategui said: “We are delighted to see that GIR works in these countries. We have received very positive feedback about how the proper implementation of this programme is helping these Unions to get into schools through Clubs,  and increase the number of players in their clubs which is ultimately our goal.” He also added: “We have got some interesting data regarding retention numbers in some of the Unions, but perhaps the key fact is that Get Into Rugby has been adapted in each of this countries to suit their Player Pathways and their specific needs, and this is exactly how GIR can be helpful and help growing the Game"

During this meeting, Rugby Europe also provided the participating Unions with development aid. Unions received Get into Rugby balls, side pitch banners, roll up banners and the technical staff received official Rugby Europe clothing for their development activities. 

The success of this Regional Meeting is a clear signal of the importance of addressing individual needs of Rugby Europe Unions through a new regional framework, and Rugby Europe is already working in planning and organising meetings to cover all it’s Union Members. 

Rugby Europe would like to thank all the participants from these 6 Unions for their attendance and their valuable participation, and in particular the Croatian Union and it’s President, Mr. Dragutin Kamenski for the outstanding hosting and for helping us organising this meeting.