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Anti-bullying awareness week | Foundation support

This week, Gloucester Rugby have launched an anti-bullying campaign into to help raise awareness and try to stamp out bullying.

The Gloucester Rugby Foundation is the official charitable arm the club and have various programmes across the community. The foundation’s programmes can help with participants mental wellbeing, and at times, give them comfort and somewhere to turn if they experience bullying.

One of these fantastic programmes, is the Gloucester Rugby Wheelchair club. Launched in 2014, the club has seen the creation of a new adult Gloucester Rugby Wheelchair team providing opportunities for disabled people to get active and involved in the sport.

One of the team members, Lewis Munday spoke about how the team has supported him with his mental wellbeing during spells of bullying:

“The work that has been done by the foundation, particularly the school’s programme for wheelchair rugby has greatly helped with my mental wellbeing.

“I have experienced bullying, but the programme helps me channel the frustration positively and gives me a feeling of self-worth.

“I have struggled with my confidence, and I am a more introverted person. Being now in a team has forced me out of my comfort zone and given me transferable skills in other aspects of my life.

“The anti-bullying campaign is very important as it shows there is support out there, it only takes someone suffering to see the campaign to make a difference”.

It’s not just the participants that can see the great work that the foundation does, the parents and careers also benefit from their child’s participation. Lewis’ mother, Louise, credits the programme for helping her son:

“The Gloucester Wheelchair Rugby programme has given my son an opportunity to keep fit, meet new people and be part of a team sport - imperative to keeping your body and mind well.

“Bringing bullying to the forefront and tackling it head on is imperative to stamping it out - sometimes people don't have the support network to express how they feel and a kind and warm atmosphere and a platform to speak can give them a chance to fight their own corner.

“Lewis feels better about his body image - looking well and feeling well in turn helps his mental wellbeing.

“An inclusive sport like wheelchair rugby gives everyone a chance to have a place in life and feel valued, a reason to keep going every week and a passion to follow”.

 

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