RLWC2021 Inclusive Volunteers at Magic Weekend
Projects and Resources
RLWC2021 x Community Integrated Care
We have teamed up with Community Integrated Care, one of Britain’s biggest and most successful social care providers, to deliver a ground-breaking social inclusion partnership.
We are working together to create life-changing opportunities for thousands of people in tournament communities and to champion a more inclusive society. From supported volunteering programmes, activity and wellbeing projects and campaigns to tackle discrimination, this is one of the biggest commitments there has ever been to social inclusion in sport and social care.
About Community Integrated Care
Community Integrated Care supports thousands of people who have care and support needs across the UK, including learning disabilities, autism, dementia, mental health concerns and physical disabilities. They are proud to be the Official Social Care Partner of RLWC2021, The RFL and Super League.
Inclusive volunteering partnership
In collaboration with Community Integrated Care, we have created a pioneering inclusive volunteer programme for the biggest and best RLWC ever.
This world-first project, supported by Sport England, will create a range of accessible volunteering opportunities for people who have care and support needs, aimed at promoting independence and making dreams come true. Giving participants the chance to enjoy a range of aspirational roles built around their personal goals, it will support people to discover and fulfil their potential, champion inclusion and awareness, and leave a legacy within communities.
The project will see Community Integrated Care create diverse and inclusive volunteering opportunities in the build-up to the tournament and offer participants the chance to apply their skills and experience in exciting, person-centred volunteering roles – joining The Power Squad, RLWC2021's volunteering team, at tournament time to help deliver the biggest and best Rugby League World Cup ever. With roles coordinated by Community Integrated Care, individuals will volunteer alongside their families or support workers, adding an exciting dimension to our already considerable focus on making the event the most inclusive Rugby League tournament ever.
RLWC2021 Advisory Group
In partnership with the Rugby League World Cup 2021, Rugby Football League and Super League, people supported by official social care partners Community Integrated Care have been given specialist mentoring and development opportunities, designed to fulfil their potential, promote independence, and make dreams come true.
Meeting together virtually every month, the group discuss ways to improve the experiences of people with learning disabilities accessing live sporting events and matchdays. From players in the Learning Disability Super League, to people who had no prior interest in Rugby League, the group have diverse interests and offer differing valued perspectives.
Inclusion Ambassador - Oliver Thomason
Born and bred in Warrington, 29-year-old all-action winger, Oliver, is an integral part of the Warrington Wolves’ Learning Disability Super League team.
A former student at Green Lane Community special school in Warrington, Oliver, started his rugby league career as a fan, watching his team from the terraces. He had always wanted to emulate his heroes but hadn’t the opportunity to. However, upon the birth of the Community Integrated Care Learning Disability Super League (LDSL), Oliver’s dreams of pulling on the primrose and blue of Warrington became a reality.
After making his debut at the Halliwell Jones Stadium against Wakefield in May 2018, Thomason scored his first try for the club in 2019 on the same turf, as he touched down against Widnes Vikings. He has gone on to perform on such stages as Wakefield’s Mobile Rocket Stadium, the DCBL Stadium in Widnes and the world-famous Anfield Stadium. Oliver’s journey truly represents the power of rugby league, which has the power to change lives, and with RLWC2021 set to be the most inclusive sporting event in history, his role as an ambassador for the tournament is truly powerful.
With thanks to Sport England, Oliver has also secured a job at Community Integrated Care. As their Sports Inclusion Assistant, he is supporting the charity to develop new ideas to use sport to change lives and is working as a mentor to support and encourage others. He will help take his amazing successes in rugby league to help develop other sports too.
Oliver cites Warrington Wolves legend ‘Super Bennie Westwood’ as his first-ever rugby league hero and he is hoping to see fellow Wolves' second-rower, Ben Currie, in action for England Men at RLWC2021.