Donated cricket kit heads to Rwanda
This week the Lord’s Taverners has donated over 1,000 pieces of cricket kit to the Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation (RCSF).
Tomorrow is a huge day in the history of cricket in Rwanda as they open their first international standard cricket stadium in Kigali with a celebratory match between two teams captained by cricket legends, Englishman Michael Vaughan and South African Herschelle Gibbs, with Lord’s Taverners ambassador Sam Billings also set to play. Over 1,500 spectators from Rwanda and the international community are expected to attend.
In 2010, British cricket lover Christopher Shale lamented Rwanda’s lack of cricket facilities and developed a plan to build the country’s first international cricket stadium. Christopher died in 2011 so was unable to realise his dream. Inspired by his idea, Christopher’s family and friends established the Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation (RCSF) to help fund the construction of the new stadium. The completion of the new stadium is the culmination of Christopher Shale’s dream.
Cricket has become one of the fastest growing sports in Rwanda, despite a shortage of adequate facilities. The stadium will provide a place for Rwandans of all ages to develop their cricket and implement these skills into their wider lives, as well as act as a vehicle to promote reconciliation.
This is the second donation of kit the charity has made to the project in the last two years and this weeks donation sees over 60 balls, 50 bags, 50 bats, 45 pairs of gloves, over 40 cricket helmets, more than 110 cricket shirts and so much more heading to the African country to help young people in the region play the game either for the first time or more regularly.
Following the culmination of this weeks cricket at the new stadium, RCSF will become ‘Cricket Builds Hope’, a social action project that uses cricket to benefit the Rwandan community. Working with local government, Cricket Builds Hope has begun developing programmes specically designed to help disadvantaged women and girls in Gahanga. These programmes are expected to be active in early 2018.
For more information on the difference cricket is making in Rwanda please read this story written by Nick Hoult of the Daily Telegraph on where Rwanda was as a nation, where it is now and how cricket has played a vital role in uniting the country since the atrocities of the 1994 genocide.
The charity is delighted to be playing just a small part in using the game of cricket to unite so many people.