*STRETCH GOAL* UCLA Women's Rugby
Hey there! We are UCLA Women’s Club Rugby, a Division I Sport with 51 passionate players coming from all over the world such as Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Malaysia, and Hong Kong. Despite our different backgrounds, our love for the sport has brought us together; many of our players have put in countless hours to become the team we are today! Since 2005, we have strived to be inclusive of all, regardless of previous experience in rugby or other sports, and this has provided many players with a “home away from home” where they find their second family (as well as workout buddies!). Many of us have grown together through the sport, learning how to face challenges without fear and also how to work with others in tough situations. Both on and off the pitch, UCLA Women’s Rugby has provided us with a safe community where we belong!
Over the recent years, our team has begun to focus more on the competitive side of rugby, allowing us to reach even higher levels of success. In just three mere years, UCLA Women’s Rugby progressed from not winning any games in 2016, to placing fourth in the league—only two games away from nationals! We have also decided to grow our coaching staff and add team conditioning and film sessions outside of our normal practice times, as well as a more structured Executive Committee to prepare for our season. We currently only have two tournaments set up for our pre-season, including our annual Scrum by the Sea, but our team hopes that we will be able to attend even more so that all of our players will be set for our season (and Nationals)!
However, attending more tournaments is very costly due to travel and housing expenses, and at UCLA, rugby is not recognized as an official NCAA sport and so we do not receive any funding from the school itself. This places a significant amount of stress on our players as all of our available funds comes from each player’s annual dues. In the past, we have had to drive for twelve hours in order to get to a game in Arizona, which resulted in many of the players participating in a rugby game with only two hours of sleep (not to mention cramped legs). With your donations, we would be able to afford a plane and fly there instead!
Adding on to this, a minimum of six hours of practice a week on top of an already-demanding academic workload makes it very difficult for players to commit to jobs or internships to pay for their tuition and rugby dues altogether. Hence, the generosity of donors (like you!) who contribute to our campaign would greatly help! Our goal is to ensure that everyone who wants to play rugby will be able to do so without any financial concerns.
Our player’s annual dues help pay for jerseys, mouth guards, hiring referees, travel expenses, and various other costs that help us compete as a team. However, relying solely on these funds makes it difficult for us to develop further and reach some of our long-term goals, such as winning Nationals and being competitive enough to eventually become part of NCAA.
Thanks to your donations, we would be able to purchase higher quality safety equipment and attend more preseason tournaments and scrimmages that facilitate our development as a team. $500 could help send our entire team to one away match in Southern California, and just half of that ($300) could help us cover the cost of two certified league referees for our games! A contribution of $100 is enough to cover the entry cost to a preseason game, a great way for many of our rookies to learn the game before our main season begins, and $5 could pay for one mouth guard (much cheaper than the cost of replacing teeth). Help us reach our goal of $10,000!
All donations make a difference to our community and are tax-deductible. Thank you so much for your generosity; everything and anything is greatly appreciated!