Tackling Numbers Shortlisted For A Sports Marketing 360 Award

Premiership Rugby and MBNA’s ground-breaking Tackling Numbers programme has been shortlisted for an award at the Sports Marketing 360 Awards in the “Making a Difference” category.

Tackling Numbers is a rugby-themed numeracy programme that aims to teach 8-9 year olds the importance of number skills in everyday life, through both classroom sessions and practical number-based rugby games.

John Greaves, Corporate Communications Director for MBNA, said: “We have been thrilled with the success of the Tackling Numbers programme and with the positive feedback it has received. We believe it is important to equip young people with the knowledge and tools to help them manage their money in the future. Engaging them in mathematics in a practical and enjoyable way, with some of the stars of English rugby, allows us to provide a foundation for good financial literacy in adulthood.”

Votes can be cast at www.sportsmarketing360.com/awards until the 5th September 2012.


We’re delighted to announce that Tackling Numbers has been shortlisted for the Best Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Programme in the Card & Payment Awards.

Tackling Numbers, taken by Geoff Caddick/PA Wire

Tackling Numbers, taken by Geoff Caddick/PA Wire

Tackling Numbers is an interactive numeracy programme for young children, developed and delivered by Premiership Rugby in partnership with MBNA. The five week programme aims to teach 8-9 year olds the importance of number skills in everyday life.

Rugby is a social game that unites and brings people from all over the world together, and so it’s great to see rugby’s ability to engage with children being used to engage kids in the classroom. The programme utilizes the power of rugby to promote the understanding and learning of numeracy in a fun and enjoyable way, and the classroom sessions are supported by practical PE sessions that unite an active mind with an active body.

The winner will be announced on 1st February 2012, so check back then to find out if we’ve won!

Harlequins Try Learning

Just found out that last month Literacy Today Magazine ran a nice little story on Try Learning, a scheme that Harlequins are running as part of the DCSF’s Playing for Success programme. In the article, Lisa Fenaroli describes how the programme helps children improve their literacy, numeracy and ICT skills. Click here for a PDF version.

Welcome to the 2008-9 Rugby Season!

Hi, I’m Wayne Morris, Community Manager for Premier Rugby.  As our new season kicks off, I’d like to take the chance to give you an overview of the community work that’s coming up…

Our goal is to put community investment at the heart of the work we do as a professional sport.  Our Chief Executive Mark McCafferty gives us an overview of the community season ahead in this recent interview:

(To learn more about the sports season itself, listen to Mark’s interview on that subject here.)

We know that by engaging with local communities we cannot just help encourage kids to play rugby, but we can also make a contribution to dealing with other social problems.

Rugby is a great sport and a great way to encourage people to stay active but we think our brands, our players and our facilities can go beyond just addressing physical activity. Our programmes also set out to tackle social issues like health, social inclusion, education, and anti-bullying.

If you’d like to know more about our community policies, partnerships and programmes, don’t hesitate to contact me.

Below is an update on some of our most recent community projects:

Positive Futures

We’ve been working this summer on a few new areas, one of which has been a social inclusion pilot project with Positive Futures in London. To find out more about it, visit our Positive Futures blog post here and listen to a series of interviews with London Active Communities CEO Gary Stannett and others who participated or helped deliver the scheme.

EDF Energy Schools Programme

I am also delighted that we’re starting a new season of the world’s largest rugby-based community programme – the EDF Energy National Schools Rugby Programme, a national programme that has exposed thousands of 8-10 year olds to tag rugby. All twelve clubs in the Guinness Premiership participate; last fall the EDF Energy programme celebrated reaching 500 schools and we hope to reach 112,000 children by July 2009. (The government recognised the achievements of the programme last year when the National Sports Foundation awarded it a grant of almost £200,000.)

Wooden Spoon and the NSPCC

We have also got some interesting new programmes coming with the Wooden Spoon and the NSPCC. But more of that shortly…

Bath Rugby Opens Playing for Success Centre

Last month Bath Rugby officially opened its Rugby Education Centre (REC) in rousing style with a Haka from students at Fitzmaurice Primary School in Bradford-on-Avon, Wiltshire. Students from the Bath region, including those at Fitzmaurice Primary School, use the REC to improve their literacy, numeracy, confidence and self-esteem through rugby in the exciting environment of a rugby stadium. The Centre is run as a part of Playing for Success, an initiative from the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF).

In this video, deputy head Paula Dawkins talks about how bringing students to the REC makes them more motivated to learn and more confident back at school, and student Kyle gives a speech about how going to the REC has helped him improve his attitude:

Read more about the event on the Bath Rugby site here and the Fitzmaurice Primary School site here.

How rugby union clubs work within schools


Last year the Guardian’s Education section ran an article about what clubs in the Guinness Premiership (particularly Saracens, Newcastle Falcons and Bath Rugby) are doing to promote healthy lifestyles in schools. You can read Ariana Green’s piece here, and download the podcast (MP3) by clicking here.