Fiji Rugby's Kaji Rugby Skills Camp Report Underline 11 May, 2011
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Report by FRU Development Manager, Sale Sorovaki.

The Fiji Rugby Union (FRU) Rugby Development Unit (RDU) conducted its first ever KAJI RUGBY SKILLS CAMP on Tuesday 10 May at Buckhurst Park in Suva. The turnout was encouraging despite the rainy weather with 200 kids braving the conditions for the love of the game.
RDO Eddie Waqa organises the 5 to 8 year olds.

The Rugby Development Officers (RDO)’s must be commended for their great effort in getting this programme on the road. The Development Unit would also like to thank the parents and everyone that was involved in getting this event to be a fun day for the kids.

International Rugby Board (IRB) Service Manager Bruce Cook was kind enough to officially open the event. Mr Cook is currently visiting all Federation of Oceania Rugby Union (FORU) affiliated countries in the Pacific which includes country’s like Fiji, Samoa, Tonga Cook islands and various others.

Introducing basic rugby skills to juniors.

A breakdown of our program. 

08:30 Camp opened by IRB's Bruce Cook.
08:40 White board session on day's programme.
09:00 Kids divided into respective age groups.
09:20 5 to 8 year - Fun and games.
  9 to 11 years - Passing, catching and running skills.
  12 to 14 years - Passing, catching, running, kicking and basic contact skills.
  15 years and over -  Passing, catching, running, kicking and contact skills.
10:00 Groups change stations.
11:00 Introduction of tag rugby to kids.
12:30 LUNCH and meet and greet Digicel Fiji and Flying Fijians players.

There were a handful of coaches that also attended to assist the RDO’s. They were:

- Sailosi Naiteqe
- Armstrong Lalabalavu
- Levaci Digitaki
- Jiuta Wainibuli

All the above coaches are participants in our IRB Level 2 programme and did a wonderful job helping out with the young kids.
But apart from our these coaches and our own RDO’s we had a whole lot more help in coaching from the many parents at the ground – it was a great deal of fun.

Kids at the FRU's Kaji Rugby Skills Camp.

The referees were also present to help with the finer details of the laws of the game and even did a little bit of coaching.

The referees were well led by:

- Joeli Tubu
- James Bolabiu
- Josaia Vakatavitavi
- Amini Talemaivavalagi
- Lote Sadranu

The ever present St John’s Ambulance were there throughout the day and luckily in the end there wasn’t any use for them, however always needs to be prepared – it’s all part of our risk management.

The Development Unit would like to thank FRU national physiotherapist William Koong for arranging the medics.

The RDU has succeeded in running this event and envisages it becoming an annual affair. There is also the need to have such clinics conducted in the West and the North. The idea is to get the kids involved in programmes such as these without interfering with school timetables.

The times has to be strategically allocated that will allow maximum output to all stakeholders. These include teachers, parents/guardians and students.

The RDU has managed to conduct a two day Level 2 Coaching Course and a Level 1 Coaching course over the first week of the holidays. This has allowed some of the participants to be directly involved in coaching whilst the coaching sessions are still fresh in their minds.

Hence, this event will be of great assistance to their coaching skills once the Second Term of school begins where rugby will be taking up their time after each school day and at the weekends.

We expected to encounter some weaknesses since this is the first ever Kaji Rugby Skills Camp conducted. These include:-
• Moving the starting time to 10:00 AM - this will allow kids, who live outside Suva, enough time to get to the ground.
• More coaches (teachers) to be available - having a ratio of two coaches to 30 players can be quite daunting and tiring for the coaches.
• RDO’s, teachers and coaches involved sitting together before a Camp to assign groups to each member - the ideal situation would be having about six coaches to a group of 30 players.

Considering the weather the kids had a wonderful day and there’s no doubt the popularity of this event will surely grow in the coming years. This is a challenge for coaches and teachers to keep up to date with their skills and maybe, just maybe at these events we could well be, as the IRB’s Bruce Cook said, “grooming future Flying Fijians” – let’s hope so. 

Don't forget to download the 'Dad is My 1st Coach' leaflet at the top of this page.

Vinaka Vakalevu. 
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