15th Strategic Sport International Rugby Tens

Asia Center Foundation’s Scholarship Program benefits from the 15th Strategic Sport International Rugby Tens Event

Scholarship Program kids excitedly running into the field to perform the pre-match dance

Scholarship Program kids excitedly running into the field to perform the pre-match dance

In celebration of ACF’s 10th anniversary of charity work last year, we brought 40 students from our scholarship program to the Strategic Sport International Rugby Tens event on 24th-26th May 2013. The scholarship program started in 2005 to help children and families who were affected by the Tsunami and this event is a highlight of each scholarship student’s year.

ACF and Phuket Rugby also manage ACF’s Youth Rugby Development program and our official youth rugby club, the Phuket Lomas, did everyone proud by winning the u/13 tournament at the Tens event. The Lomas welcomes any child interested in learning to play rugby and it was great to see how youth rugby is developing on Phuket and in southern Thailand as we faced teams from Bangkok, Surathani and Krabi.

Eight years on and the program is still going strong and, with major support for the program coming from the Rugby Tens event each year, it was a natural decision to include the children once again. The scholarship students, who come from both Phuket and Khao Lak schools, prepared a performance for their sponsoring teams. This year’s theme was “HOPE” and the students performed a ‘thank you’ song.

We also received a kind donation of B50 000 from DCM Solutions during the tournament in support of the annual Bike Ride from Bangkok, which takes place in February each year. It is mainly rugby players who “branch out” and included this wonderful fund raising event to their programs that support the Charity Bike Ride. The rugby event raised B270 150 for the renewal of existing scholarships to students on the program.

Four children also shared their hopes, dreams and  perspectives on how the scholarship program helps and motivates them to continue to go to school and do as well as they are. One hundred balloons were also released to symbolize the childrens’ dreams for the future, which will hopefully become a reality thanks to the ongoing support from the rugby community and others.