Creating positive futures through the HITZ rugby programme

Having moved out of his mum’s house at 13 because of his behaviour and anger issues, Josh was then moved into a secure unit. Then after living with a stable foster carer for a number of years they unfortunately decided to stop fostering which left Josh having to sofa surf and becoming addicted to drugs.

During this time, he also ended up in an unhealthy relationship. He was then helped by social services who supported Josh to get away to safety and moved him to Exeter. 

When Josh started at the Wooden Spoon-supported HITZ programme he had just moved from his home town, so his life was uncertain, somewhat chaotic and he was still struggling with his recent history which can out in his aggression.

HITZ is Premiership Rugby’s award-winning education and employability programme which works with over 2,000 14-18 year olds across England every year.

Initially Josh found it hard to concentrate and contribute in class but HITZ has given Josh some grounding and a level of certainty that has allowed him to focus and accept the support being offered.

He has gone from being a young man who didn’t see much of a future ahead to a man driven to pursue new and different opportunities. 

He is keen to represent the programme, promote its growth and become a role model for the course, showing others what it is possible to achieve on the programme. Throughout the programme he has developed his talking and listening skills, developed his tolerance and participated in a number of work experience placements.

Josh is now looking at a career working with young people and is looking to develop his coaching skills and to gain his qualifications. Josh said:

“I would recommend Hitz to anyone because of the experiences you have and the life changes it brings. Hitz brings the best out of every single individual. It’s a  life changer. Best thing I have ever done in my life.
My goal after Hitz is to go into construction which Hitz is helping me with and to continue playing rugby at New Cross RFC.”

HITZ logo


Read more about the impact of HITZ here.

To find out more about the programme and how it supports young people, visit