With the 09/10 Ospreys shirts arriving in store this weekend, the Ospreys have teamed up with sponsors RWE npower renewables and the SOS IRB Kit Aid appeal to launch an amnesty on old Ospreys shirts, that will see them recycled for use in developing rugby nations
The new jersey goes on sale at the Ospreys Superstore on Saturday morning, and under the terms of the shirt amnesty, anyone handing in an old Ospreys replica shirt featuring the old crest, from seasons 03/04 through to 06/07, at the time of purchase, will receive a 10 per cent discount off the price of the 09/10 version.
All the old shirts collected will then be donated to SOS IRB Kit Aid, a charity that recycles second hand kits for use in emerging rugby countries in Eastern Europe, with the Ospreys shirts destined for Bosnia as part of the charity’s first ever delivery to the former Yugoslav state later this year.
Ospreys Managing Director, Roger Blyth, said:
“Having previously worked with SOS IRB Kit Aid to collect and recycle unwanted rugby equipment on behalf of our supporters, we are delighted to be teaming up with them once again for the Ospreys shirt amnesty. They do a fantastic job, providing youngsters who maybe wouldn’t have the opportunity to play our fantastic game, the chance to enjoy rugby regardless of the social conditions in which they live and we, along with sponsors RWE npower renewables, are delighted to be able to assist in any way.
“Tens of thousands of Ospreys shirts are sold every year, so I have no doubt that there will be plenty of old shirts tucked away in drawers and wardrobes, not just across the region but right around the UK and beyond, that are no longer being worn by their owner. By encouraging any supporters purchasing this year’s shirt to dig out their old ones and hand them in at the Ospreys Superstore, everyone is a winner. Not only do SOS IRB Kit Aid get their hands on more shirts for their forthcoming trip to Bosnia, but our fans will also get 10 per cent off the price of the new one.”
Kim Daye, PR Officer for Wales, RWE npower renewables, added:
“As an organisation, RWE npower renewables is focused on creating a sustainable environment and are always looking at ways in which we can accommodate this across our business, and as such, we are delighted to be able to provide assistance to SOS IRB Kit Aid through the collection of these old shirts for recycling. The amnesty is a good extension of our efforts to promote sustainability and a great way to link our own brand values with those of the team we sponsor.
“The SOS IRB Kit Aid charity provides a wonderful service, recycling old and unused rugby kit, extending its life span and ensuring that good quality equipment can be re-used by those who need it and we applaud their efforts. As well as assisting with collection, we will be encouraging our staff to trade in their old shirts, especially in light of our recent name change.”
SOS IRB Kit Aid is the brainchild of John Broadfoot, a rugby mad father who was prompted to set up the organisation following a school rugby tour to Romania where he witnessed for himself the power of rugby in a nation where poor wages prevent many families from being able to afford the most basic of equipment. Fully endorsed by the International Rugby Board, SOS has grown from its roots when John collected spare equipment from just ten schools, to its current position where the organisation collects unwanted or outgrown rugby kit and equipment from more than 400 schools, rugby clubs, kit manufacturers and referees societies across the UK.
With the help of the IRB, the kit is sent, via bona fide national rugby federations, to help with the development of junior rugby in less advantaged countries. As well as where it all started in Romania, SOS is now active in Georgia, Moldova, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Poland, Ukraine, Croatia, Slovenia and Serbia. The intention is that eventually, there will be more than 2,000 organisations on board distributing kit throughout the world, wherever youngsters want to play rugby, be it townships in South Africa, the Indian sub-continent or inner city rugby in deprived areas of the UK.
Ospreys star and British Lion, Adam Jones, said:
“This shirt amnesty on behalf of SOS IRB Kit Aid is a fantastic initiative that, as a player, I had no hesitation in supporting. The charity does great work spreading the rugby gospel and ensuring that youngsters in eastern Europe can get access to decent equipment to play the game.
“I read over the summer that last season we sold more than 42,000 shirts. With numbers like that, I’d hope that we will be able to recycle plenty of old shirts that can then be put to good use in Bosnia by SOS IRB Kit Aid.”
Ospreys season ticket holders and members are able to claim the amnesty discount on top of their mandatory 10 per cent discount that they already qualify for, giving them a massive 20 per cent off the price of a new shirt. The amnesty discount is available on the home and away supporters, match and ladies replicas, along with the replica hoody, in all adult and junior sizes.
The Ospreys join a long list of top rugby names in supporting SOS IRB Kit Aid, with the likes of Ireland skipper Brian O’Driscoll, England Grand Slam winning captain Bill Beaumont, British Lions legend Ian McGeechan, World Cup winners Martin Johnson and Jonny Wilkinson, New Zealand coach Graham Henry and Welsh front row legend Graham Price all backing the charity.
For further information on SOS IRB Kit Aid please visit www.sosirbkitaid.org.