When you support ChildFund Pass it Back you are helping young people change the world.

ChildFund Pass it Back uses rugby to equip disadvantaged children and young people in Asia with the skills they need to overcome challenges, inspire positive social change and ‘pass it back’ to their communities.

The integrated rugby and life skills curriculum includes four content modules: Understanding gender, Planning for the Future, Being Healthy and Feeling Safe.

These learning areas provide the knowledge, skills and attitudes to keep young people from developing communities in Asia safe and healthy in an rapidly changing region.

Change the world by helping girls

“In Timor-Leste, there is no gender equality,” says Feb, a 17-year-old ChildFund Pass It Back coach.

ChildFund Pass It Back female players in Laos

By supporting girls and young women to learn new skills and take on leadership responsibilities, the ChildFund Pass It Back program is actively challenging traditional gender norms.

“We still use this ancient system where opportunities are given to boys or men. There are less opportunities in terms of education and jobs for girls and women. Women have no opportunity to lead; they just know how to cook.”

Girls in the countries where ChildFund Pass it Back operates grow up at a disadvantage. The program is changing that.

ChildFund Pass it Back uses rugby, as opposed to more popular local sports, because it is not well known in the countries where the program operates. This means there’s no pre-existing gender bias.

More than half of all participants in ChildFund Pass it Back are girls. By supporting girls and young women to learn new skills and take on leadership responsibilities, the ChildFund Pass It Back program is actively challenging traditional gender norms and roles that disadvantage females in local communities.

Boys, girls and coaches learn about gender equality, while also giving female participants confidence to follow their dreams and speak up when they’re being held back.

“We have to give opportunities to girls and women so they can develop themselves and they can become leaders,” Feb says.

“I want to raise the issue of gender equality. I want equal opportunities for girls and boys in Timor-Leste.”

Thanks to the program, girls like Feb are becoming the leaders their mothers were never allowed to be.

Change the world by promoting health

Children in the remote villages where ChildFund Pass it Back operates generally have shorter life expectancy than children in developing countries. They are more likely to be exposed to disease and illness, many of which are preventable in developed nations, and face serious obstacles getting proper healthcare.

ChildFund Pass it Back finds effective ways to teach children practical lessons about health and nutrition while also tackling tricky issues such as puberty and reproductive health.

Ly in Vietnam has benefited from these lessons. Unlike previous generations, she learned about the changes she would experience during puberty. After feeling “very shy” initially, she became comfortable with the subject.

“This was the very first time that I had discussed such things with other people,” she said. “Before that, I didn’t know that my body would change.

“I no longer feel shy but comfortable when sharing with others what I have learned in the ‘Being Healthy’ module. Sooner or later, these changes come to everyone so there is no reason to be ashamed of discussing it.”

Change the world by preparing children for the future

Like many children participating in ChildFund Pass it Back, Duoc takes on more responsibility than a child his age should.

The 12-year-old takes care of the housework at his home in Vietnam and looks after he nine-year-old brother because his parents are often away working.

“Sometimes when my parents were not able to send money to me in time, I would go catching crabs and frogs and sell them for grocery money,” Duoc said.

When Duoc is on the rugby field playing with friends he gets to experience childhood. He also learns important strategies for saving money and making plans.

“For each catch, I usually earn 88,000 VND (around $4USD) at the very most,” he said. “Some days, when I was not so lucky, I could only earn one-third of that.”

Duoc would use the money to buy groceries for himself and his brother, and occasionally some snacks as a treat. “But the rest I put in my piggy bank.”

For children like Duoc who live in poverty these simple financial lessons are extremely valuable and can help them break the cycle and reach their potential.

Change the world by making it safer for children

ChildFund Pass it Back helps make communities safer and informs children about their rights. In many of the countries where the program operates, children’s rights are not upheld, and young people are without protection.

Children are often that they have rights, which makes them more vulnerable. Participants in ChildFund Pass it Back gain confidence, which means they can speak up when something goes wrong.

This helps children like 16-year-old Lar from a remote village in Laos’ mountainous north.

“Before participating in ChildFund Pass It Back, I thought that men had more rights than women,” she said. “But now, I know more about gender equity – that women also have the same rights as men, and that women can do things just like men.

“This has changed my thinking.”

Change the world through ChildFund Pass it Back

You might not be able to solve every problem in the world – but you can give more children the chance to play, learn and grow through ChildFund Pass It Back.

You can help us provide more young people across South East Asia with the same opportunities as Lar, Feb, Duoc and Ly. Donate today, and change the world.