Rugby Makes an Impact on Memphis Youth!
Local & National News | December 01, 2022
Season of Giving Exclusive look at Memphis Inner City Rugby

Recently I had the honor of meeting Shane Young. I had the pleasure of going to my first rugby game. I have to tell you, I was so impressed with what I saw. African American High School girls, or shall I say, young women kicking butt as they played the game of Rugby. There were parents there, supporters, and lots of team members showing their support of the game. No fancy stadium, no signs of sponsors, just kids learning the sport of rugby. I was there to shoot a Great Performers feature for Duncan Williams Asset Management. Look for the feature in just a few weeks. I heard someone call my name. It was Shane Young. He was easy to spot, being one of the few white guys there. I was easy for him to spot because I was the guy with the while hair that looked lost.

Shane Young is the Executive Director and Founder of Memphis Inner City Rugby. Let me borrow his words to describe this amazing organization. What is Memphis Inner City Rugby? They are a local non-profit with no buildings, no vehicles, and no national funders. They relentlessly serve young people on the margins of our city. They chase the difficult work and they do not cherry pick cases that are easier to work with.

Their coaches and teams have become a legitimate entity in the lives of young people through years of meaningful impact and responsive services to them. They have an extremely talented staff that gets paid modestly. They don't pay people for marketing, fundraising, or events. Instead, they dig their heels in and work the extra hours to make it happen. Their founders never pass the mission off to someone else. They're still here, as this is their life's work. Nobody does more with less than MICR.

Click on the Image to Learn More about the Organization

Rugby has been called a great sport to improve confidence, physical and mental health, whether played competitively or recreationally. It is truly an international sport. While some believe rugby to be dangerous, experts believe it’s the best discipline parents can offer to a child or teachers can offer to students. Rugby offers kids- whether small or large, slim or heavy, short or stout, agile or speedster- equal opportunities to run with the ball, pass it, and play defense. In rugby, everyone needs to take part that way; nobody gets left out.

What I think of rugby for the youth of Memphis. What I saw on that cold Saturday was truly special. Kids being kids, but active kids. There were very few phones out. These kids were engaged in the game. Here on this field, these kids have to give their best. So the opportunities being presented to these youths by Shane and company are almost limitless.

A few days after the game, I stopped by Shane’s makeshift office. Nothing fancy about this place. But it is exactly what it should be. A place where people come together focused on helping serve the youth of our city.

A Picture tells the Whole Story

Recently, Memphis Inner City Rugby celebrated their 10-year anniversary with a nice gala. In the office when I stopped by, was a painting that had been auctioned off during the gala. The painting was getting ready to go to its new home at Slingshot Memphis. Across the bottom of the painting were 5 images of young people who had been in the Memphis Inner City Rugby program and across the top was a painting of those young people today. All have found success and are well on their way to becoming future leaders in our community.

Here at JustMyMemphis, we are calling the month of December, the Season of Giving! Not because of the Holiday. Instead, because it is a time when many local non-profit organizations are ending the year and making their last request for donations. Donations that will help them make an impact in the year to come! I decided on that cold Saturday at the park that the Memphis Inner City Rugby team would be the first organization we spotlight.

I grew up in Orange Mound. A shy, odd, bi-racial kid, that didn’t fit in anywhere. I have devoted my life to helping others find and do more with their greatness! Shane Young is a white guy that decided long ago that he would help young people that the world has tried to forget, find their greatness. With that being said, I want you to consider making a donation to the amazing work that is being done at Memphis Inner City Rugby. Let these young people know they are not alone!



JustMy is about supporting LOCALS, check out these LOCAL area businesses and organizations! Everything you want to know about them is here! Like and Share TODAY! If you are a local business and would like a free listing with us, create your Digital Business Card today and we will share it with the community!