24 Oct 2008

Children in the rural village of Glyn Ceiriog, will soon be rucking and mauling to their hearts content with the formation of a village rugby Club, thanks to National Lottery funding from the Sports Council for Wales.

A £992 Community Chest grant will help Glyn Ceiriog Rugby Club to buy equipment such as contact pads, balls and marker cones, as well as putting two volunteers through Level one and two coaching qualifications. Twenty four local juniors, all under 16s, are raring to kick start their rugby careers with weekly two hour sessions for under eights and under 12s.

Graham Edwards, Glyn Ceiriog Rugby Club Coach and Fixture Secretary said, "We want to provide local sporting opportunities for young people in the village and to encourage more young people to participate in rugby union in a recognised, controlled environment."

Since the inception of the Sports Council for Wales’ Community Chest scheme in 1999, communities across the length and breadth of Wales have been investing heavily in sports and physical activity projects.

Chair of the Sports Council for Wales, Philip Carling, said:

"Community Chest has been and continues to be a huge success and is very popular throughout Wrexham. The increase in funding and the greater scope of the scheme will increase its effectiveness.

"Panels based in each of the 22 local authorities in Wales hold the purse strings and have delegated authority to award grants to worthwhile projects. We want to hear of bright ideas and projects that will get more people in Wrexham more active, more often."

As a result of the popularity and undoubted success of the scheme, the Sports Council for Wales is raising the level of grant. Organisations keen to develop sport and physical activity in Wales can now receive up to £1000 for a qualifying project over a 12 month period.

The scope of the scheme has also been widened. Grants have traditionally been awarded to sports clubs and sporting bodies. Now most organisations seeking to develop physical activity and sporting projects will be eligible for an award.

The Community Chest has recently been infiltrating additional areas of work such as the voluntary sector (e.g. Voluntary Youth Clubs, Women’s Institute) and the workplace, as well as continuing to support projects in the health and education arenas. So while funding the local football club might get the younger members of the community moving, backing a walking group will encourage more adults to get active.