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First outing for Foundation's mixed-ability squad at Sixways

The Community Foundation’s mixed-ability team had its first ever outing last weekend, as they took on Worcester Warriors’ Homeless RFC at Sixways last weekend.

It was the first realisation of mixed-ability rugby for the award-winning Community Foundation, as part of their delivery of the national Project Rugby programme.

Project Rugby is a joint initiative between Premiership Rugby and England Rugby designed to increase participation in the game by people from traditionally underrepresented groups-including people with disabilities.

Eleven players, representing a range of community and disability provision in Bristol, took on their Worcester counterparts both before Bristol Bears’ Gallagher Premiership clash with Warriors, and during the half-time interval.

The fixture saw 18 months of community development across Bristol come together to create one inclusive rugby family.

“Physical disability, learning disability, mental health difficulties, long term injuries - all became invisible in this magic moment of inclusion. An unbelievable effort and event from Simon and the boys at Worcester, which we can’t wait to reciprocate."

Kris Tavender, programme manager

“To see the combination of players smiling in the sunshine on Sunday was truly humbling,” said programme manager, Kris Tavender.

“Physical disability, learning disability, mental health difficulties, long term injuries - all became invisible in this magic moment of inclusion.

“An unbelievable effort and event from Simon and the boys at Worcester, which we can’t wait to reciprocate.”

Following on from this, the Foundation team were hosted by the Warriors Community Foundation, parading the perimeter of the Sixways pitch as their heroes warmed up, before joining the Worcester contingent in the guard of honour to lead out both teams for the league fixture.