TOP BAR - Fixtures

Warrior Dan is a Champion

Dan Hart is hoping more troubled youngsters will enrol onto Premiership Rugby’s HITZ programme after he was handed a top award at the inaugural HITZ Awards ceremony.

Dan from HITZ Worcester Warriors won the HITZ Champion award supported by Comic Relief at Barclays HQ in London earlier this month.
 
The award is designed to recognise a HITZ participant or member of the community who has gone above and beyond the call of duty to help someone on the programme to overcome personal barriers.
 
To find out more about why Dan won the HITZ Champion award, please click here.
 
The award was handed to Dan as a result of his work with all of the youngsters enrolled in Worcester's HITZ programme, but especially Nathan Collins from Redditch.
 
Nathan was homeless and battling drug addiction but, thanks to Dan's help, he is now on the straight and narrow.
 
"It's great to win this award," said Dan. "It's really nice to have all the hard work recognised.
 
"I first got involved with HITZ Worcester Warriors on work experience from university and then the HITZ Officer Stuart asked me to stay on, which I did and now I'm there full-time.
 
"Nathan joined about five months ago and he had a lot of issues to begin with but we've worked hard with him and he has improved a lot.
 
"When he first joined, he was addicted to drugs, alcohol, he didn't see his family and he was homeless, so we had a lot of work to do but we've done that and he has turned everything around which is incredibly rewarding.
 
"Nathan has got another three months on the programme so we'll continue working with him, make sure he's got a stable home and ensure that he doesn't fall into any of the bad habits that he fell into in the past.
 
"I would say for anyone who is going to join HITZ that as long as they want to change, then come along and we'll do everything we can to help them on that journey."
 
Nathan insists that Dan is a worthy winner, admitting that without his help he would be back at square one yet again.
 
"With Dan it is different because I could talk to him about stuff and Dan took me under his wing and has been there to support me for the last five months," said Collins.
 
"It was his idea to go to the police and tell them about the drugs and stuff and it is Dan who has given me a new lease of life.
 
"He has helped me with money problems, personal hygiene and I am so grateful for him and I want to say thank you to him because he has done it all in his own time, after hours.
 
"He has just been there for me and without Dan and HITZ, I would still be on the drugs at rock bottom or dead in a gutter somewhere."
 
Wasps flanker Sam Jones was in attendance to present the award and insisted Dan and Nathan are both an inspiration.
 
"I'm hugely privileged to be a part of HITZ, and every single time you head to a training session or event the young people you meet are hugely inspirational," said Jones.
 
"They are playing rugby to get themselves out of the bad situations that they are in which is a brilliant thing to see.
 
"If I leave a coaching session after a couple of hours having given them just the tiniest bit of inspiration and motivation then I am happy and that's my job done.
 
"It's a huge part of the role of professional rugby players that is often forgotten about."
 
The award winning HITZ programme tackles some of the greatest challenges facing young people today – unemployment, crime and disillusionment.  Delivered nationally by Premiership Rugby and funded by national partners Barclays, Comic Relief, Land Rover and Wooden Spoon, HITZ uses rugby to increase young people's resilience, self-reliance and confidence. It gives them the skills to get back into education, vocational training, apprenticeships and employment. Please visit hitzrugby.com to find out more.

Latest News

Stephen Myler: Northampton Saints ready to fight for the title

Stephen Myler is predicting the closest ever Aviva Premiership Rugby campaign and believes his Northampton Saints side will be right…

Sonatane Takulua expecting big things from Newcastle Falcons this season

Sonatane Takulua believes unity and a collective purpose, combined with an improved playing pool, can help propel Newcastle Falcons up…

Sonatane Takulua

Wasps name team for first pre-season fixture against Ulster

Dai Young has named a 26-man squad to take on Ulster Rugby at Kingspan Stadium in the first pre-season fixture…

Anglo-Welsh Cup 2017-18 launched

WORCESTER WARRIORS have the honour of hosting the opening match in this year’s Anglo-Welsh Cup on Friday 3 November, when…

Leicester Tigers win the Anglo Welsh Cup

Ally Hogg pleased by Newcastle Falcons’ early progress

Ally Hogg believes Newcastle Falcons are well set to attack the new Aviva Premiership season after a double dose of…

Ally Hogg

Topsy Ojo relishing Exiles return to Aviva Premiership Rugby action at HQ

Topsy Ojo believes there could be no more fitting way for London Irish to announce their return as an Aviva…

Newcastle Falcons’ Sonatane Takulua sees Philadelphia trip as a ‘great opportunity’

Newcastle Falcons’ Sonatane Takulua insists his side’s September clash with Saracens in Philadelphia will be no holiday for the players,…

Sonatane Takulua

Harlequins statement: Luke Wallace and Jonas Mikalcius

Harlequins can confirm today (Tuesday 15th August) that flanker Luke Wallace dislocated his hip during the pre-season friendly against London…

Luke Wallace

London Irish kick-off Anglo-Welsh Cup at home to Bath

London Irish will host Bath Rugby at the Madejski Stadium in the opening round of the Anglo-Welsh Cup on Saturday…

London Irish kick-off Anglo-Welsh Cup at home to Bath

HITZ graduate secures first full time job after being inspired by Premiership Rugby final

A teenager from Leigh who overcame a troubled home life and tackled confidence and communication issues thanks to Premiership Rugby…

Lucy Neal

Nick Kennedy delighted with first pre-season hit-out for London Irish

London Irish director of rugby Nick Kennedy is looking forward to seeing his side build on Saturday’s thrilling contest against…

Nick Kennedy

Philadelphia bound Nick Civetta can’t wait for American Series challenge with Newcastle Falcons

NICK CIVETTA HAS had an unlikely path to the top level but as he prepares to embark on his second season…

Nick Civetta

Demetri Catrakilis relishing chance to reunite with old friend Tim Swiel

Harlequins fly-half Demetri Catrakilis has revealed he is ready to join forces with  compatriot and old acquaintance Tim Swiel – insisting…

Worcester Warriors to use number of players in Hartpury test

Warriors will look to use up to 37 players during their fixture against Hartpury College this Saturday in their first…

GJ van Velze

Emergency Services workers invited to London Double Header

Saracens are offering up to eight free tickets to any member of the London Emergency Services for the upcoming London…

London Double Header

Newcastle Falcons teams for double-header v Doncaster and Nottingham

Three-time French title winner Maxime Mermoz is among the Newcastle Falcons players making their debuts in Saturday’s home double header…

Nili Latu

Lewis and Phillips to make Bath Rugby debuts against Bristol

Josh Lewis and James Phillips will make their Bath Rugby debuts in the Club’s first pre-season game against Bristol Rugby…

James Phillips

London Irish name side for pre-season opener

London Irish have named a 29-man squad for tomorrow’s Cunningham Duncombe Series against Harlequins at Hazelwood, with seven summer signings…

Greig Tonks

Nick Civetta primed for Newcastle Falcons’ double header this Saturday

Having spent the summer helping his country qualify for the Rugby World Cup American lock Nick Civetta is keen to…

Nick Civetta