Rugby Africa launches Women’s Leadership and Management Training programme


Rugby Africa, the continental governing body of Rugby across Africa, has introduced the Women’s Leadership and Management Training programme.

The program will feature a dynamic curriculum consisting of presentations, workshops, expert testimonials and real-world case studies.

In alignment with World Rugby, the online training programme is designed to equip women volunteers and employees of rugby unions with essential managerial skills. Participants, who have been identified as potential future leaders in the sport, will engage in rigorous training sessions conducted over a period of 10 months, with two days of training every three weeks.

The programme is being run in collaboration with the Executive Masters in Sports Organizations Management Association (MEMOS) and the International University of Health, Exercise and Sport (LUNEX, who are providing their expertise and support to ensure the success of the programme. Through the online platform provided by LUNEX, participants will have access to resources and guidance as they seek enhance their leadership and management capabilities.

The initiative highlights Rugby Africa’s commitment to developing rugby across the continent while empowering women in the sport. By providing opportunities for female participants to engage in management training and leadership development, Rugby Africa is actively working towards fostering inclusivity and gender equality within the realm of rugby across Africa.

Upon the completion of the programme, participants will devise a women’s rugby development project tailored to their environment, encompassing all elements necessary for its success. In December 2024, three of the top projects will be selected.

Commenting on the initiative Rugby Africa president Hebert Mensah said: “Rugby Africa and World Rugby stand united in our vision to empower and uplift the women who will drive the force behind rugby’s growth and development in Africa. We’ve crafted a programme that champions inclusivity, ambition and leadership among women. This signifies our ongoing commitment to forging a future where every woman thrives in sports, assumes leadership roles with confidence and where their invaluable contributions are acknowledged and celebrated.”

World Rugby regional partnerships manager for Africa Coralie Van Den Berg added: “Accelerating the growth of women’s rugby stands as a top priority for World Rugby. Our commitment to this cause is evident on the global stage, as seen through the success of the 2021 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand and the launch of WXV, a global women’s competition. Nonetheless, World Rugby acknowledges the need for more off-field efforts to promote women in leadership roles and drive growth for girls and women in the sport. Rugby Africa’s Sports Leadership and Management Training Program, in partnership with LUNEX, is a pioneering initiative we proudly support. This program will empower talented women to contribute to the game’s sustainable development in Africa.”

On her part, Rugby Africa women’s rugby manager Maha Zaoui: “As programme director, I strongly believe this will not only empower women to excel in leadership roles within sports but also serves as a catalyst for the growth and advancement of rugby in Africa. By equipping women with the necessary skills and opportunities, we are sculpting a legacy of excellence, ensuring that sport in Africa truly is inclusive for generations to come.”

Rugby Africa executive member and chairperson of the women’s Rugby Advisory Committee (WRAC) Paula Lanco: “Empowering women in leadership roles not only strengthens teams but also serves as a source of inspiration for girls and women aspiring to join the rugby world. By fostering a culture of inclusivity and mentorship, we are guaranteeing that young girls across Africa know they have a place within the rugby community, with full access to the necessary tools and guidance.”

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