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Advancing Education and Opportunity through Rugby

by The ATLAS Foundation


Improved exam results, reduced truancy and exclusions, all documented outcomes for young people playing rugby. The ATLAS Foundation will fund rugby development programmes for schools in deprived areas in the US. Our first focus is the Memphis Inner City Rugby project (MICR). This remarkable project has received worldwide acclaim for its work in Memphis; a city ranking #1 for American child poverty.
total goal


Teenagers from tough neighbourhoods have very poor education and employment forecasts. In the US there is little rugby played so teachers dont know how to coach and the proven benefits of the game are widely unavailable. In Memphis a couple of visionary teachers have turned this around. Now in their 5th year and 100% of their graduates have been accepted to college. They've earned nearly $4 million in scholarship offers, and 10 alums are playing college rugby.


ATLAS wants to secure the future of this project. At the moment it is only possible through the goodwill of a few people who already have full time jobs. ATLAS will pay for trained rugby coaches to work in schools with children aged 11 - 18 yrs, and train teachers so the benefits are sustained into the future

Long-Term Impact

In the UK exam results rose by 12% across the schools who played rugby in the most disadvantaged areas. In Memphis the athletic and academic results are proven with 100% reaching college, ATLAS wants to ensure this can continue and grow. Memphis' population is 63% AfricanAmerican. Before MICR, access to rugby was disproportionately skewed towards affluent communities outside the heart of the city. Today, 64% of players are from minority backgrounds.

Additional Documentation

This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).


ATLAS current projects
Memphis Inner City Rugby

Organization Information

The ATLAS Foundation

Location: London - United Kingdom
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
Sally Pettipher
London, London United Kingdom
March 2017 Accelerator
Donations: $8,053 raised ($5,000 needed)
Donors: 37 (40 needed)
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