Students attending London Irish’s award winning HITZ programme had a day to remember when they visited the club’s Hazelwood training complex.

Greeted by director of rugby Nick Kennedy, the former Heineken Cup winner spoke to the youngsters before introducing them to the first team players ahead of their afternoon session.

The HITZ programme, which tackles some of the greatest challenges facing young people today, aims to get youngsters aged between 16 and 18 back into education and to help them gain the required qualifications to progress to college or an apprenticeship.

HITZ student James Rees said: “The programme has helped me to get my qualifications as well as boosting my overall confidence.

“The opportunity to visit London Irish was fantastic and it was great to watch training and meet the players.”

HITZ officer Ainsley Campbell said: “The students really enjoyed their time at London Irish and they all experienced what a professional sporting environment is like.

“The players and coaches were superb with the youngsters, giving them tips and advice and I know that they are looking forward to coming back.”

The HITZ programme aims to:-

• Support and educate disadvantaged and disillusioned young people into further opportunities in mainstream education and training, while realising their own personal outcome (apprenticeship, employment with training, access to apprenticeships and further education)

• Encourage participants into regular sporting participation to receive the associated health and wellbeing benefits

• Encourage good relations between people regardless of their backgrounds

• Reduce crime and anti-social behaviour

For more details please visit the HITZ website -

To become involved in HITZ London Irish, email HITZ officer Ainsley Campbell by clicking here. You can also follow HITZ London Irish on  Facebook  and  Twitter .

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