Personal Story

Naz Deen

Naz sees the lasting benefits the TRT programme has on young people in the UK and around the world.

Exhilarating, challenging and fun

I have worked in partnership with the Tag Rugby Trust (TRT) for over 7 years, dating back to 2010, and it has honestly become the most exhilarating, challenging and fun aspect of my entire life. I have learnt many skills that have enhanced my personal and social development, giving me the courage to conquer many new things. I now have the confidence and the ability to let go of preconceived fears and overcome all sorts of challenges – from speaking to over 200 Senior Chief Executives in central London in order to raise money, to coordinating a tag rugby tournament for hundreds of children in Zambia.

Whilst in Lusaka, Zambia, (in over a 100 degrees heat), although I was severely dehydrated due to food poisoning, I still managed to work with over three hundred and fifty children at a tag rugby tournament. My determination was fuelled by the fact that these were some of the happiest and most appreciative children that I’ve ever met – it was a privilege to spend time with them.

Amazing role models

I feel very honoured and proud to say that I have been on two separate Tag Rugby Tours to Africa. The memories that I’m now able to share with the young leaders from the UK who assisted me, make the whole experience even more worthwhile. To watch these young people surpass all the objectives set – such as fundraising, delivering tag rugby in their community, public speaking and presenting to corporate organisations – not to mention being amazing role models to children, both at home in London and in Africa, is the true essence of what this unique project is all about.

Friendships for life

Unexpectedly, I have also formed new friendships for life with my ‘rugby brothers’ and ‘TRT Mentors’ – Trevor Martingell and Tony Oulton. Both of these gentlemen have unlocked a section of my brain that I hadn’t been using for the first 30 years of my life. Their dedication and hard work is unparalleled, and the advice and guidance they offer throughout all projects is of an exceptionally high standard.

An enduring legacy

There is seriously no other sporting project that can offer such a wide range of experiences and emotions, and the bespoke nature of this particular TRT sports initiative means that it never truly ends. Once you come back from a tour, its’ enduring legacy leads to an enthusiasm to look for further opportunities, for yourself and for others, to be part of such a wonderful adventure again and again.