Saturday marked the end of Rugby Academy of Samoa’s (R.A.S) four-week tag tournament for 5-15 year olds.
A full two hours of fun in the sun saw families and friends playing together on the R.A.S rugby field in Lepea as well as children enjoying the delights of bouncy castles and other fun activities.
The Saturday tag tournaments were part of a holistic plan to create a pathway for young local boys and girls to stay active, keep fit, build character, change mindsets and consider any sport, not necessarily rugby, as a professional career.
R.A.S was created in 2014 by former Manu Samoa Captain and current U20s coach, Mase Mahonri Schwalger and a number of highly experienced coaches who are international champions in their respective fields.
In a bid to develop rugby for young enthusiasts, particularly young boys from 15 – 17 years old, R.A.S also recognises the importance of education in developing a well-rounded player.
Through the R.A.S programme, 11 players have been given the opportunity to travel on scholarship to NZ and two to Japan with more awaiting scholarship opportunities - most of these students are from rural areas as well as Savai’i.
Recognizing a real need for the promotion of healthy living within Samoa, R.A.S hosts a number of health and fitness activities that are open to both boys and girls of any age.
This includes Saturday morning sessions at the R.A.S field in Lepea, teaching basic rugby skills and promoting an active lifestyle to young children from primary and secondary schools, in rural and urban areas.
R.A.S’s Manager, Leituala Joe Chan Ting, said, “The tournament was a huge success!!
“It’s always great to see the kids having fun on the field and really getting into it. We’d also like to take this opportunity to thank our community partners, R.A.S coaches, the kids and their parents and our sponsors, Devondale Milk and of course, Digicel, Samoa’s bigger, better network without whom activities like this wouldn’t be possible.”