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Rugby Communications Boards To Help Clubs Provide For People With Additional Needs

Shane Califf with Jack Chambers TD and Michael Coghlan 2/12/2022

IRFU/Sport Ireland Communications Boards, Sport Ireland Campus, Snugborough, Dublin 2/12/2022 Sport Ireland’s Director Of Governing Bodies Shane Califf with Minister of State for Sport, the Gaeltacht & Defence, Jack Chambers TD and IRFU Leinster Representative Michael Coghlan Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Ben Brady

A new IRFU initiative funded by Sport Ireland is making rugby more accessible to people with additional needs.

Every rugby club in the four provinces is to receive one Rugby Communications Board –a large format visual aid that helps those with additional communication needs to achieve their potential in rugby.

It is a specialised communications system, designed by Speech and Language Therapists and based on principles of child language development that helps coaches to simplify their language and supports players to understand someone is saying.

Stephen Gore, Shane Califf, Jack Chambers TD, Michael Coghlan and Larissa Muldoon 2/12/2022

The IRFU Rugby Communications Board

  • Supports those with additional communication needs to achieve their potential
  • Supports the coaches message to be understood
  • Helps break down communication barriers
  • Supports the players to communicate with others
  • Most importantly it supports inclusion within our clubs

Click Here To Learn More About The IRFU Rugby Communications Board 

Minister of State for Sport, the Gaeltacht & Defence Jack Chambers TD met with IRFU representatives at Sport Ireland Campus to launch the initiative and mark International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2022, which takes place December 3rd each year.

Printed Rugby Communications boards are being rolled out first to clubs with existing disability sections and will be available to all clubs by the end of the season.

A series of coaching cards are currently in production to provide additional practical support to volunteers working with players with additional needs. The cards are a practical, hand-held printed pitch-side tool for coaches and who would benefit from a visual aid in delivering training. Distribution of coaching cards is set to get underway in the new year.

The disability section of the Irish Rugby website has a number of existing resources which can be accessed by all volunteers.

These include:

All resources can be accessed at https://www.irishrugby.ie/playing-the-game/spirit-of-rugby/disability-rugby/