Bedford Blues Academy coach Phil Powell is one of 2,015 new Level 2 rugby coaches who will help to improve the standard of grassroots rugby across the country. QBE Insurance, in partnership with the Rugby Football Union, has announced that the QBE Coaching Club programme – an initiative to recruit and train more than 2,000 new Level 2 rugby coaches – has reached its milestone.
The programme was established to ensure the game in England has enough quality coaches to welcome new players and encourage them to stay within the sport.
Powell first started coaching as a part of his BTEC Sport Science course. He quickly realised that coaching was his passion and immediately startedcoaching rugby and swimming.
He embarked on the QBE Coaching Club course in order to develop as a coach and to pursue a career as a full time rugby coach – going on to become a coach with the Northampton Saints community programme and at the Bedford Blues Academy.
Powell said: “The QBE Coaching Club has given me a range of new skills and confidence in my abilities, I have improved as a coach and a leader. It is great that QBE Insurance were able to fund my Level 2 course and help me on my career path.”
England head coach Stuart Lancaster addedd: “The 2,015 new QBE coaches will have a fundamental impact on grassroots rugby in this country. It’s a fantastic initiative and an incredible legacy to leave.”
Thanks to QBE’s commitment and investment, the initiative has increased the number of Level 2 coaches in England by 25 per cent.
The coaches trained through the scheme will positively impact 50,000 players across the country. Over the next four years over one million hours of coaching will be delivered by QBE coaches, which if it were being paid for would equate to £20 million.
RFU rugby development director Steve Grainger said: “This is such an exciting year for rugby and we’re delighted to have achieved our target, working with QBE Insurance, of recruiting and training 2,015 new Level 2 coaches.
“We put this programme in place back in 2012 because coaching is a crucial factor in developing, sustaining and increasing participation in our sport.
“With the World Cup here in England the spotlight will be on rugby and we want to ensure that we have enough coaches in place to deal with what we hope will be an influx of new players into the sport.
“This success will be an important factor in helping to continue to grow rugby across the nation.”
If you would like to find out more about QBE’s involvement in rugby head to www.QBErugby.com or follow @QBErugby on Twitter