It’s a chance to use the game she loves to help others and Grace Hamilton cannot wait to see the impact rugby can have on communities. Hamilton is ready to fall in love with rugby all over again.
Not that the Wallaroo lost any passion for the game, but when she headed to Zambia to work with Livingstone Rugby Club, she knew she would see the real impact rugby could have on a community and the people within it.
She worked with girls’ rugby teams, conducted clinics, training sessions and did community service work with a local school. She hoped her visit would help change the lives of young girls in Africa, Zambia to be particular.
“I’m so excited to spread the values of rugby building a community and giving back no matter where you are from,” she said, “a few people I know have been in Zambia before and say it’s very eye opening but they say it will make you fall in love with rugby again, which is great. Great indeed, to see people be so excited by having you there; how you are giving something to them puts a smile on their face in their regards to sport.”
On her visit to Zambia, Hamilton’s notion was to impart the best knowledge about rugby to girls and women. Her greatest strength acquired from mentors, which she shared with the Zambian lads were that – It’s a great feeling to know that even if you’re not the biggest, strongest or fittest, if you have the determination and commitment, you can make a difference on the field and make your team mates proud.
The Livingstone Rugby Club Zambia Trust began four years ago when Paul Adams spoke to people at Rugby Australia and his good friend George Gregan about doing something in Zambia to support the work of the Tag Rugby Trust out of the UK.
“I never thought girls could play rugby. I was wrong!”
“First I learnt how to fall on the ground so I didn’t hurt myself. Then I learnt where to put my arms and legs when I made contact, and where to put my head to keep it safe. Finally they told me “just remember to run at them as fast as they’re running at you”. Sounds simple enough, but remembering all that for your first tackle is easier said than done. Most of the time, I just went in low, closed my eyes, and hoped for the best” – Hamilton.