flag-28Washington DC Youth Rugby was founded by The Washington Rugby Football Club (WRFC) in 2004.  We are the only youth rugby program operating in the District of Columbia.  The program was founded with the goal to bring the sport of rugby to Washington DC’s inner-city.

We had seven kids show up for the first match, which was just enough to field a team.  The program took off from there as the players that showed up spread the word to their friends, classmates, brothers and sisters.

Soon, word got out to the Embassy community and we had families from Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Ireland and England coming out to join the program.  We now have families representing all quadrants of DC including contingents from the Brookland, Capital Hill, and Edgewood neighborhoods.

The core summer youth program continues to thrive.  In the summer, we have Under-7, Under-9, Under-11, Under-13, and Under-15 teams playing in the Potomac Rugby Union summer two-hand touch league for kids from five to 14 years old.  We will have close to 100 children playing with the club this year!

In 2006, we started an under-19 program for those that age out of the summer touch league and competed as a club team in the PRU High School Division.  We later moved our U-19 team to Calvin Coolidge High School to compete in the Metro Area Varsity Rugby Conference (MAVRC) and made the playoffs in two of our four years. Many of these former Coolidge Colts are still involved in rugby. They play men’s rugby locally and volunteer as coaches for our elementary and high school teams.

As our program grew, Washington DC Youth Rugby expanded in 2014 to include DC’s latino community in Columbia Heights working in Bell Multi-Cultural High School to support both boys and girls rugby teams.  The program is helping more kids in DC learn valuable team and leadership skills, exposing them to other cultures, encouraging and aiding their educational goals, and providing a safe, FUN after-school activity.   

With support from the David and Betsy Lewis Foundation we are bringing flag rugby programs to DC elementary and middle schools.  Earlier this year, we sponsored training as well as provided all the equipment for the programs: balls, cones and flag belts at no cost to the schools.  This way rugby can be taught by non-rugby people during PE and after school programs.

Rugby is the fastest growing sport at the youth level.  Our vision is to have elementary and middle school children in all quadrants of the city playing rugby.  By the time children get to high school, there will be a growing interest for more rugby programs. We plan to help support new school programs to keep students engaged throughout high school and hopefully college, so they will be familiar with rugby and have a foundation for success on and off the pitch.

Our coaches and administrators are all volunteers and one of our goals is to keep the program free for all participants.  Many youth sports in our area are cost prohibitive.

The biggest change we have seen is in the support of our parents.  We encourage all parents to volunteer to help coach, referee matches, provide transportation and of course compete in the season finale “Kids vs. Coaches and Parents” match.  Please don’t be afraid to ask how you can help.

We also receive a lot of support from the rugby community and encourage anyone that wants to help us out or perhaps start a program elsewhere in The District to please let us know.  Our goal is to have teams in all quadrants in the District and to have over 1,000 participants playing rugby in Washington DC.  If interested in helping, please Contact Us.

In addition, we are a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization (EIN:26-2820897) and are participants in Combined Federal Campaign (CFC).  Our CFC number is 66651.