Women’s rugby players raising funds for coaching tour in Africa

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By Ardy Ramezani, Vikes Communications

April 24, 2013, Victoria, BC (ISN) – University of Victoria Vikes women’s rugby student-athletes Caitlin Harvey (Toronto, Ont.) and Sofija Novakovic (Toronto, Ont.) are embarking on an important campaign this summer.

The rugby pair are a part of Gainline Africa’s coaching tour in Northern Uganda happening this June. 


Gainline Africa is a Canadian sports development organization that uses rugby as a vehicle for development in Africa’s post-conflict communities. Gainline Africa’s mission is to empower youth and improve their community’s quality of life though the sport of rugby. The program fosters the physical, cognitive, and social development of youth by teaching valuable life skills though role models in their community.

Novakovic is a fourth year psychology and sociology student with over eight years of rugby experience and Harvey is a second year bio-psych student and has been playing rugby since grade nine. The duo have hopes of inspiring the people of Uganda through their passion for rugby and hope to make a difference in communities within the country.

“This coaching tour will be a learning experience for both of us,” said Novakovic. This is such an excellent opportunity for us to give back to those who are less fortunate.”

The Gainline Africa program also effectively and non-intrusively educates youth and their families about relevant health and disease prevention issues such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, sanitation and immunization. In order to generate a sustainable change and lasting impact in the community, Gainline Africa looks to build the capacity of rugby communities, not replace them. Through partnership with local organizations and community leaders an infrastructure can be created though local engagement and leadership. This grassroots approach seeks to maximize positive impact and create a sustainable legacy of Canadian-Ugandan rugby community cooperation.

Novakovic and Harvey are looking to gain financial support for their upcoming coaching tour. Those interested can support them via the below website: