The QRU have launched their very own Reconciliation Action Plan as part of National Reconciliation Week.

The state body has been a long term contributor to the Indigenous community and this is the natural progressive step following the Queensland Reds Indigenous Program and the Generation Next program, which started in 2010 and 2012 respectively.

Those programs provide support and opportunity to Indigenous communities and has had a profound impact on Cherbourg, Woorabinda and Yarrabah.

It has provided support for 26 schools and directly affected 85 participants through 55,655 mentor to participant contact hours.

Of those 85 participants, the program has achieved 100 percent primary to high school transition rate, 92 percent school attendance for participating students in 2015 up 6 percent from 2013 and a 92 percent program retention rate.The Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) is a step towards recognising the impact Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have had on the past, present and future of rugby.

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“The QRU recognises that rugby plays a part in the rich sporting and cultural life of millions of Australians,” CEO Richard Barker said.

“Through our involvement in rugby, we are fortunate to be in the position to assist to overcome barriers and create genuine opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, that will assist in promoting the oldest continuous living culture in the world.

“QRU believes there are future opportunities for growth and learning and welcomes the opportunity to continue to support our rugby community on the journey of reconciliation.

“Building sustainable programs for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and celebrating existing Indigenous rugby initiatives are key components of making rugby a game for all Queenslanders to enjoy.”

Selwyn Button, the Assistant Director General – State Schools Indigenous Education, Department of Education and Training – is also a member of the QRU Indigenous Advisory Group and commended the QRU’s commitment to Indigenous affairs.

“Whilst supporting future Indigenous leaders is not the core business of elite sporting clubs, the QRU has embraced the challenge and established strong working relationships with partnering communities, families and schools to achieve this shared vision.

“The primary focus of the Queensland Reds Indigenous Program (QRIP) isn’t about rugby, but is designed to identify, support and grow our future leaders.

“It is not just about turning up to school, but going above and beyond to demonstrate excellence through participation in activities that encourage students to reach their true potential, whilst using role models and incentives for ongoing engagement.”