The group of students from Tonypandy Community College travelled to the Macquarie Group offices in the City of London for the inaugural awards night.

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The awards celebrated the successes of the Rugby Works programme, which exists to have a profound impact on the lives of young people.

A total of 30 youngsters from across the project were shortlisted for the eight awards which recognised, amongst other things, leadership and teamwork.

The Tonypandy students, who joined the Dallaglio Foundation earlier this year and have been involved in many events during the past few school terms, were overjoyed to receive the Best Team Performance Award.

Headteacher Helen O’Sullivan said: “We are so proud of the achievements of our  students and also want to thank lawrnece dallaglio and all those involved in the foundation for the opportunities it has given them.

“Rugby works helps young people change their lives for the better through the platform and inherent values of rugby. They achieve this through a groundbreaking programme, which gives self-belief, opportunities and support to young people from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.”

Lawrence Dallaglio said, “When you’ve had a tough start in life, uniting through sport can be immensely powerful. It takes real commitment to be part of rugby works and these young people have embraced the programme, shown that commitment pays off and really seen the benefit of the support that coaches and team mates give, which will help them in the future.”

The programme works with 14-16 year olds over two years getting them ready for the work place. Based around a curriculum of playing rugby and developing employability skills through classroom based activities.

The Rt Hon Nicky Morgan, Secretary of State for Education, who attended the awards, said: “These awards are testament to the value of the Dallaglio Foundation’s work. Rugby can teach important life skills – about how to bounce back from setbacks, to show integrity in victory and defeat, and to respect others, especially your opponents.”

The Dallaglio Foundation RugbyWorks, aims to leave young people more employable, socially responsible and making positive decisions to make the most of their lives.

It currently works in 12 London Boroughs, Newcastle, Bristol and the Rhondda with 250 young people, and plans to extend this by the end of 2016.