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Academy Pair Set For Life-Changing African Mission

13th November 2014
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Will Manhire and Josh Smith, two of London Scottish’s Senior Academy boys have been given the opportunity to work with Bhubesi Pride next year in Africa.

Bhubesi Pride is a charity that assembles a highly qualified team of coaching staff to drive through Africa on an annual six-month expedition, supporting rugby and community development in schools and communities across ten African countries.

Bhubesi Pride began as a series of projects, starting in 2011, using rugby as a tool for sustainable development.

Bhubesi Pride aim to achieve the objectives of:

•    Uniting African children through rugby (boys and girls), addressing health, education and life skills.

•    Empowering local teaching staff, providing equipment, resources, training and knowledge.

•    Inspiring sustainable development by developing young leaders and building relevant relationships. 

Bhubesi Pride work across Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia and South Africa.

With the help of London Scottish Academy and the Bill McLaren Foundation, both Will and Josh are able to take part in this once in a lifetime opportunity.

Will is joining the pride from Lilongwe, Malawi on the 24th April and continuing on to Gaborone, Botswana until the 24th May.

Josh is joining the pride on the 27th May in Swakopmund, Namibia and continuing on to Port Elizabeth, South Africa until the 28th June.

Will said: “The money raised for Bhubesi Pride will allow both Josh and I to progress through Africa, promoting mass participation in sport, specifically rugby.

“We will be able to provide African staff and pupils with relevant equipment to rugby and education guides.

“Furthermore we will be able to continually develop international relationships with schools and National Governing Bodies in Africa, identifying further areas for development in the long-term, such as improved classrooms, sports pitches, education and training centres, often things we take for granted.”

Josh added: “I am thrilled to be allocated a place with Bhubesi Pride for their ‘Rugby in Africa 2015’ programme.

“Rugby has given me so much throughout my life.

“I hope to use my passion for playing and coaching rugby, to empower and inspire local communities to provide sustainable development for the children of many African countries.

“Inspiring at least one child to dream big and never give up will be a great achievement, from which I will take a lot of pride from.”

Corné du Rand- London Scottish Academy Director said: “London Scottish is a proud club with a strong community sense.

“When Bosman du Plessis from the SRU introduced Bhubesi Pride and Richard Bennett to Ross Peacock, our Community Rugby Manager, and he in turn suggested that it can be something our academy boys could get involved in, we realised that it would be a perfect fit.

“The London Scottish Academy is now proud to introduce Bhubesi Pride is our official charity supported by the academy.

“The chance to get involved with a project that change people and communities for the better through the game of rugby, is humbling but exciting for us here at the academy.

“Will and Josh have been selected by Bhubesi Pride to go to Africa and help inspire communities – part funded by The Bill McLaren Foundation.

“As a club and academy we want to support them as part of the expedition team for 2015 and we aim to raise over £4000 together.

“We know our members and rugby supporters will get behind the project so they can go and make an impact in Africa as part of the Bhubesi Pride team.”

Richard Bennett, Founder of Bhubesi Pride, said: “Bhubesi Pride Foundation is thrilled to have established a relationship with London Scottish.

“In the short time that we've worked together, we've found people passionate about their rugby and the community.

“We're just so excited about the club realising this enthusiasm with us in Africa, and I look forward to a long and meaningful partnership together.” 

Oliver Munns, also of Bhubesi Pride, said: “It's amazing to be able to engage with young people who want to make a difference in the world. Josh and Will already have a wealth of experience and it's inspiring that they're choosing to share this in such a positive way.

“It's also great to know how much they stand to gain from being part of the team and the impact that this will have on the rest of their lives.”

Please support this great initiative by donating via their official online fundraising pages or by putting some money in the buckets at London Scottish home matches this season.

Link to Josh’s ‘BT My Donate’ page: https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/bhubesipridejoshua

Link to Will Manhire's ‘BT My Donate’ page: https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/willmanhire1

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