Switch

Inspiring & developing girls' rugby

In October 2016, the Harlequins Foundation launched SWITCH – a multi-tiered programme aimed at encouraging girls to get involved in the sport by:
  • Increasing accessibility and participation – providing opportunities for girls to take part in rugby.
  • Inspiring and excelling – using our coaches to nurture and develop girls’ progression within the game.
  • Developing and sustaining – educating staff, supporting schools, and providing an onward pathway.

Since its launch, SWITCH has engaged with hundreds of girls including 203 attending the Girls’ rugby roadshow in February 2019. Two brand new girls school rugby teams have also been created.

To get involved in our SWITCH programme contact us today on foundation@nullquins.co.uk 

Harlequin Ladies Involvement

Players from our Senior Women’s Team are key role models for the girls the Switch Programme empowers. They regularly make player and guest coach appearances as they help inspire the next generation of Harlequins Players.

In our most recent Harlequins Switch Roadshow a number of key players turned their hands to coaching: Harlequins Ladies and England U20 fly-half Ellie Green at Worthing RFC, Harlequins Ladies and Ireland front rower Leah Lyons at Pulborough, winger Ellie Miles at Wimbledon, 1st XV hooker Davinia Catlin at Old Reigatians and former Wales International Rebecca Rowe at Chobham. Racheal Burford, Harlequins Ladies Club Captain attended the entire Roadshow, making guest appearances at all 5 clubs.

Head of Foundation Marc Leckie said: “It’s fantastic to have these players on board with us for our first edition of the SWITCH Roadshow.

“ It is a brilliant programme that introduces young women to the sport, encouraging fun, enjoyment and the opportunity to transition into local clubs and perhaps even Harlequins Ladies. We are all hopeful that in the next few years some of the girls who have participated in SWITCH will end up running out at The Stoop.

“No matter what their level of ability, the Roadshow is a brilliant opportunity for girls to come down and learn from some of the best players in the game, and I am so excited to see how many have already booked on to what will be a fantastic week”.

Women and girls leadership programme

Following the success of our landmark fixture between the Harlequins Ladies & Richmond Ladies last season, where over 4,500 spectators cheered Harlequins to victory, we have announced our ambition to strive for gender parity in sport and in wider society. As such, the Harlequins Foundation are looking to broaden the reach of our SWITCH Women and Girls rugby project. We would love our SWITCH project to become an entirely female led and delivered programme. We want to develop a group of women who would receive not only their coaching qualifications and become a coaching delivery work force, they would also receive a number of other CPDs around work, motivational talks and other work/development opportunities. We have a small working group currently trialling this concept from select local Universities and those who are part of Harlequins Centre of Excellence.
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Schools engaged with in Twickenham and Richmond since 2016
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Attended February 2019 Switch Roadshow
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Ambition to engage with 10,000 girls over next 10 years
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Brand new girls schools rugby teams created
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Attended ladies' match day coaching clinics this season
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Girls taken part in Switch schools sessions this season