Every year the Howler’s donate money, rugby gear, school supplies, clothes and shoes to our Cuban counterparts in Havana. Cuba is a communist state where nearly all of the local inhabitants live in extremely destitute neighbourhoods. With limited resources for all sports in Cuba, simple things such as boots and jerseys are hard to come by. Even getting to the games can be tough, as some players walk hours from their rural homes to attend games in the larger cities.
Recently, my mom informed me “It’s time to either throw away those boxes of unused rugby gear and boots in the storage room or it’s going to Big Brothers”. Feeling slightly sentimental about turning over years of playing kit to Big Brothers I thought to myself; “Is there anyone who might appreciate this antique rugby kit”. I asked Karl Fix, and of course he knew someone who needed it! Karl’s longtime Cuban Contact, Chukin from Havana was overwhelmed to hear that the Howler’s will be sending some Rugby Gear in early 2011, and what started out as cleaning some items out of my parents storage room has turned into a worldwide donation campaign!
So far the Howler’s have confirmed donations from Canadian Rugby Legend Gareth Rees, current pro player Jamie Cudmore from Clermont Auvergne in France, as well as various domestic donations from local rugby clubs in Calgary, Ontario, Saskatchewan Vancouver and Victoria. This outpouring of support has been fantastic and speaks to the character of rugby players and supporters across Canada. If you would like to donate any rugby gear to help support the development of Rugby in Cuba please contact Chase Sereda or Rodger Swany who are co-coordinating the shipment of the gear to Cuba: firstname.lastname@example.org & email@example.com.
The Howler’s will be travelling to Havana in November 2011 along with teams from Mexico, The United States, Peru, and hopefully other European Countries for the Havana 7s tournament. Your donation will help make this event possible and give many impoverished children an opportunity to play sports; an opportunity which by no means is insignificant in Cuba.