From last report:
"Rugby in Israel is not a well known sport, but the focus of this project on peace and reconciliation has made it noteworthy beyond the pitch. Atlas is working with a number of private donors to bring rugby to schools in mixed communities. The values of rugby, with fierce opposition on the pitch, but strong fellowship off the pitch, is an important tool to break down traditional mistrust between different religious and racial groups in the country.
This project started early in 2018 and is now working in four cities across Israel, with twelve schools regularly, and bringing in a further 32 for festivals. These include Jews, Druze, Arabs and Christians; local people and refugees. The early signs are good, and we look forward to our first impact assessment to understand how best to serve the cause of peace in this country.
As with many new rugby projects we use Tags rather than tackles, allowing any child between the ages of 6-12 to experience Rugby without fear of physical contact and without the need for prior technical or physical knowledge or skills.
Our work is currently in Pardes Hana, Tel Mond, Tel Aviv, Ayelet Hasahar, Haifa, Modiin and Rehovot."
For only £1,000 per year, we can add in another school and a further 100 children to the programme.
Our previous Israel Embassy event led to a new team coming together in the USA, led by notably philanthropic individuals with close links to the UK, USA and Jewish communities, thus making a formidable team to lead 'Atlas USA' forward and support further programmes in North and South America as well as projects like this in Israel. We are already planning our first fundraising event and 'inaugration' in New York next February.
For our last impact assessment, our All Schools project in Israel, headed up by the Israeli Rugby Union, managed to help 2800 children in the whole year. Eight hundred (28%) of these kids were helped on a regular basis (i.e. worked with once a week or more). They reported working with 45 schools across the country. We have sent out for an impact assessment for the year 2018-19 and look forward to seeing the results soon.