BNP Paribas Personal Finance has hosted a special event to recognise the achievements of charity partner Dallaglio RugbyWorks during its first 12 months in the West Midlands.
The event at the company’s Solihull headquarters saw rugby-legend Lawrence Dallaglio address delegates following the Rugby World Cup in Japan, while he also used the opportunity to reflect on some of the charity’s key achievements during its first year in the region.
This included delivery at seven schools across the West Midlands, with young people on the programme getting the chance to participate in a variety of Career Taster Days and interview workshops. They also played in an inaugural East vs West Midlands rugby tournament.
The charity’s work in the West Midlands is vitally important, as despite the county being a thriving area of redevelopment, it is also facing some very real social issues. 42% of children in Birmingham are living in poverty, with 13% of the population having no skills, which is the worst in the UK. Youth unemployment is at 15.5%, which is 1.1% higher than the national average.
By placing coaches in alternative provision schools and working hand in hand with teaching staff, Dallaglio RugbyWorks uses the values of rugby to help young people develop a huge range of essential skills by providing structure, support and a pathway to the future.
Speaking about his charity’s partnership with BNP Paribas Personal Finance, Lawrence Dallaglio said: “I’m so grateful for the support BNP Paribas Personal Finance has given us over the past year in the West Midlands.
“The work we’re doing is so important here, and the results we are getting show that the power of sport really can change people’s lives.”
The latest statistics are proving that rugby truly does ‘work’, with 65% more likely to stay in education, employment or training after just five Dallaglio RugbyWorks sessions, rising to 85% after 10 sessions, and an incredible 95% after 15 sessions.
Stephen Hunt, chief executive of BNP Paribas Personal Finance, said: “It’s been a great year working with Dallaglio RugbyWorks and seeing the outcome and achievements from the programme really is astounding.
“For us, it’s all about making a positive, local impact and through the partnership with the charity we’ve been able to be a part of some incredible transformative work in our community.
“We’ve been successful in getting lots of fantastic companies in the Midlands to provide Career Taster Days for young people, such as Arval, Michelin and BSS. At this week’s event we had the likes of Rolls-Royce, Dixons Carphone and Solihull BID sign up to support the charity, too.
“We’re hoping to get even more companies to pledge their support to this amazing charity over the next two years to inspire and motivate the next generation.”
To get involved and support the activity in the West Midlands, please visit https://www.dallagliorugbyworks.com/