Academy players benefit from unique life experience

This month players from the Leeds Rhinos Under-19s players visited HM Prison Leeds as part of their education programme within the Leeds Rhinos Academy.

The visit was attended by eleven Under-19s players, nine of which are in their first year with the Academy, and was organised with the help of former Rhinos forward and the Prison’s physical education teacher, Darren Fleary.

Speaking after the visit, back rower Lewis Delaney said: “I thought it was a good visit for the coaches to organise for us because it’s not every day that you get to go and look around a prison and see what it is like. Obviously I want to stay on the right path and by going on the visit, it just opened my eyes a bit more, seeing what it was like inside.”

Team mate, Jack Mallinson added: “It was really beneficial for us. Speaking to the offenders really emphasised how important it is that, as rugby players, that we make the right decisions in life. They talked about having the right friends around us which I think I’ve got here at the Academy.”

Under-19s assistant coach, Jonny Wainhouse, helped to organise the trip and thanked HM Prison Leeds.

“We would like to thank HM Prison Leeds for letting us visit and how accommodating they were to the players and staff. The concept of the visit is brilliant; it gives our young players a real eye opener into what happens when you get your choices wrong.

“The experience became even more real when our players heard the prisoners’ stories, especially those with rugby backgrounds. It was very powerful.”

Watch more of what the players had to say about the visit below: