Rugby League reaches Migrant kids at Gala Day

Hundreds of high school age kids from a wide variety of backgrounds came together at Lidcombe Oval on Thursday despite the fact they were all still on the way to learning the English language and had never laid eyes on a Steeden until recently.

The kids were from a variety of Intensive English Centre (IEC) schools and were put through some League Tag-style drills at Lidcombe Oval by former NRL stars and current NRL ambassadors Hazem El Masri and Joe Galuvao.

The Gala Day is part of an ongoing 'In Harmony In League' social inclusion program that has been run by the NRL and is now in its third year, having so far reached around 730 students at eight IEC schools, including 150 this year.

The thinking is that exposure to the sport in league-mad Sydney can help give young students going through an intensive program to learn English can be exposed to a sport that firstly they may enjoy, and secondly will give them an extra avenue of social interaction in their new country and a point of conversation with new classmates, while also hopefully creating some rugby league fans and even players of the future.