A community champions' recognition initiative has been launched as part of the Impact Beyond programme for Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 in San Francisco.

The 'Try Makers' programme, developed by USA Rugby in collaboration with local youth development organisation Play Rugby USA, is designed to recognise youths and adults in the Bay Area who champion the sport of rugby and reflect its values in their everyday interactions. 

“Rugby shares the same values as the Bay Area, so we wanted to develop a programme that would actively recognise the contributions local members of the rugby community are making every day,” said Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 General Manager Rosie Spaulding.

Play Rugby USA San Francisco Program Director Anthony Lenos added: “Try Makers is one of Play Rugby USA’s core values and is featured prominently in the Impact Beyond curriculum. We are excited to be a part of this new programme and highlight the impact that rugby has for young people, both on and off the field.” 

'Try Makers', though, is only one aspect of USA Rugby's Impact Beyond programme as they seek to leave a RWC Sevens 2018 legacy that stretches beyond the walls of AT&T Park, which welcomes 24 men's and 16 women's teams from 20-22 July.

USA Rugby will also be hosting clinics and tournaments around the Bay Area where youths will not only be introduced to rugby but also to its values that drive the sport with the goal of engaging, inspiring and empowering young people.

In partnership with Play Rugby USA, USA Rugby Academies and Playworks Northern California, the Impact Beyond programme will be made available to schools, nonprofits and after-school programmes across the Bay Area through lesson plans and a series of events and tournaments. The curriculum strives to educate in three areas - inclusion, cultural appreciation and the skills of rugby - and is available at www.usarugby.org/impactbeyond.

“Through Impact Beyond, we will be supporting local programmes that help the region’s children build character and understand how diversity makes us all stronger,“ said USA Rugby CEO Dan Payne. “We could not be more excited to work with Bay Area schools, nonprofits and community partners across the region in celebration of Rugby World Cup Sevens coming to San Francisco.”  

Nominations for 'Try Makers' will be accepted online from 21 February until 30 April, 2018 with the recipients to be announced in June. To be eligible, nominees must reside in one of the nine Bay Area counties and participate in the rugby community. For more information or to submit a nomination, visit www.usarugby.org/impactbeyond.