The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs and Western Sydney University have today unveiled details of a unique programme they have devised together that uses sport and education to raise aspirations of social inclusion for high school students.
The ‘Be All In’ programme gives students an opportunity to participate in multiple sports and the education component covers topics like building social harmony, and valuing self-esteem and diversity. The programme targets:
· Students who have shown an interest in sport but aren’t confident to get involved,
· students from refugee backgrounds who could benefit from involvement in sport as a means of joining in conversations and activities with other students,
· female students from strict cultural backgrounds where girls participation in sport isn’t encouraged (parents are invited to be a part of the programme),
· high needs students who could use sport as a way of keeping them focused in class
Wiley Park Girls High School, Bankstown Girls High School, Belmore Boys High School and Sir Joseph Banks High School are the first schools to participate in the programme and, if WSU studies confirm it to be successful, it will be rolled out to more schools across Sydney.
‘Be All In’ is the flagship programme of a multi-faceted partnership forged this year between WSU and the Bulldogs which also involves:
· the organisations working together to develop advocacy campaigns for regionally focused community issues
· the development of mutually beneficial research projects
· Bulldogs players and staff presented with career development and educational opportunities
· potential internship opportunities at the Bulldogs for WSU students
· discount and other incentives across both organisations
· Bulldogs merchandise sold at WSU Campuses
· scholarship opportunities
Moses Mbye has become the first player to take up the educational opportunities offered by the partnership, commencing a Bachelor of Business this semester.
Bulldogs CEO Raelene Castle says this is a significant partnership for the Bulldogs.
“Western Sydney University and the Canterbury Bulldogs are two major institutions in Sydney’s west who both value the importance of education and the importance of social inclusion,” Castle said.
“By combining our knowledge and skills we expect this partnership will have a positive impact on the communities we represent. A big part of the partnership will see WSU researchers monitoring the impact of our Bulldogs programmes so we can better understand the role Rugby League can play in effecting social change.”
Western Sydney University Deputy Vice Chancellor Scott Holmes says, “This is a fantastic opportunity for the University and the Bulldogs. Through this joint research, we can understand the impact programs like ‘Be All In' have on social inclusion. It’s the way we do research at Western, working with influential organisations like the Bulldogs to understand our community and change it.”