The Global Rugby Collaborative is proud to highlight Memphis Inner City Rugby as our November Member of the Month! One of the youngest members of the GRC, MICR was founded by Shane Young and Devin O’Brien in 2012 with the belief that rugby can be a unique and powerful piece of the multifaceted solution required to address the opportunity gap for inner city students. In just over one year of operation they have grown from 1 team to 6, and impacted over 200 young men who come from low-income areas across Memphis.
MICR credit the power of rugby to their success in reaching out to disconnected young men – but what exactly is “the power of rugby?” Founder Shane Young describes rugby as ‘the ultimate team sport,’ which reveals and develops character strengths that will ultimately allow players to succeed both on and off the pitch. MIRC uses rugby to engage and develop relationships with players who might otherwise remain disconnected from any community. Weekly college prep and rugby mentoring sessions help players develop the ability to confront a lifetime of challenges with the toughness, diligence and character needed to overcome them.
In February of 2013, Memphis Inner City Rugby opened it’s arms to the Memphis area’s first ever inner city middle school rugby team. After experiencing the success of their high school program at Power Center Academy, the school eagerly got their younger students involved. MICR now boasts 6 teams throughout the city and we suspect the program will only continue to flourish! After just one year the program boasted a 100% acceptance rate to post-secondary education or military programs for their senior student-athletes, and two are currently pursuing rugby at the collegiate level. Current players are in touch with college recruiters and on the hunt for scholarships.
We wish Memphis Inner City Rugby continued success as they guide the young men of Memphis toward higher education through the power of rugby! To find out more or to get involved please visit their Facebook page.