London Irish is proud to announce that it has begun its HITZ programme for the new season. Starting in September, HITZ will be based in the Reading central library and will use various sporting venues and gyms across the town to provide fantastic provision for young people.

The education project provides opportunities for 16-19 year old NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training) young people to gain the skills to get back into education, vocational training, apprenticeships and employment. The programme offers young people the chance to study for a BTEC Level One in Sport and Active Leisure and also to work on their maths and English skills. This is done through a three-day-a-week programme which is personally tailored towards the learners needs by our training partner, Prospect Training Services. This is achieved through a good mix of exciting sporting activities such as rugby, tennis, karate, Pilates and gym sessions alongside a structured educational programme.

London Irish HITZ ambassador Halani Aulika said: “I got involved in the project as it is something that is close to my heart. Rugby has played a huge part in my life and I feel the HITZ project can help others in difficult situations. The opportunity to work with young people, not only as a ambassador to HITZ, but as a mentor, was one I couldn’t turn down and I hope that as the project expands so I can get involved as much as possible.”

HITZ Project Officer Andrew Arter added: “Bringing HITZ to Reading is a really big opportunity for London Irish to offer genuine opportunities to young people and build the brand. As a town it provides superb transport links across several counties which will allow us to provide opportunities to a larger number of young people. We are providing a unique educational programme and will be running pitch up and play sessions around the parks in the town through our partnership with the local Reading Rugby Clubs.”

To get more people interested in signing up, the club will have a stall outside Waterstones in Broad StreetReading town centre between 9am and 5pm on Thursday, August 20.

As the season goes on there will be regular programme updates from HITZ, however if you would like to keep up to date with the project please follow @LIRFCHITZ on twitter.

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