8 Mar 2016

Sport: Samoa Rugby hosts first Women's Rugby Conference

7:53 am on 8 March 2016

The Samoa Rugby Union is hosting its first Women's Rugby Conference in celebration of International Women's Day.

About 1800 women are currently involved in rugby in Samoa.

The SRU's Women's Development Officer Toluiva Keneti said 15 secondary school teachers have been selected as female rugby ambassadors to attend the inaugural conference and participate in level one coaching and refereeing workshops.

"Our objectives and aims for this conference is to allow women to play sport, the introduction of the 'Get Into Rugby' programme to all our female ambassadors, the development of basic understanding of women in coaching and rugby law through referees, creating awareness of the benefits of coaching and referees to the game so as to inspire volunteers and some of the youth to further develop their skills to a higher level."

On day two, four secondary schools teams will take part in the workshop so what has been learnt on day one can be put into practice.

The conference runs for two days and is being held in partnership with UN Women, the Ministry of Women, Community and Social Development, the Ministry of Health and Samoa Victim's Support.

Toluiva Keneti said they plan to offer support to rural women involved in rugby in Samoa, to nurture newcomers to the game and create an awareness programme for women on the health and physical benefits that come from playing.

The conference is being held at the SRU Complex in Tuanaimato on Upolu and Toluiva Keneti said they hoped to expand it to Savai'i in future years.

Samoa Manusina vs. England at the 2014 RWC in Paris.

Samoa Manusina vs. England at the 2014 RWC in Paris. Photo: Picarel / IRB