Coach Noy – how rugby changed my life


I was born and initially raised in Chomphet district, Luang Prabang province. When I finished 4th grade, my family decided to move to Vientiane capital to take care of my grandmother who was getting older.

I have been a Pass It Back Coach with the Lao Rugby Federation for more than two years now. It all started from the time when I saw a group of people playing a new sport called Rugby, on the playground of my school. I had been watching the children playing every day and also noticed that after the games, they would come and sit together to talk about something – like a discussion. It was something quite strange and different, compared to other sports, plus, the Coaches were still very young! I was really impressed about that, that people who seems to be around my age can do such work. I then looked for information and signed up to be a Coach through Lao Rugby. 

Coach Noy at a Coach Training

What I like the most about being a Coach is that I can help young people to gain their self-confidence and become braver to do what they want to do. Along with skills and knowledge I’ve learnt, Pass It Back helps me to become a more confident and open person who now dares to step out of the comfort zone and embrace new things. I also made a lot of new friends from this program, too!

What I like the most about being a Pass It Back Coach is that I can help young people to gain their self-confidence and become braver to do what they want to do.

I also like that I can make some income since starting my coaching job. In the past I only asked for daily allowance from my parents, but now I rely less on them and also I feel more responsible about my life and my financial status. I have monthly salary from my job as a Coach and I put some into my savings, sometimes I give some to my parents too. Being a Coach helps me to acknowledge the value of money because this is my very first job, and I have to think carefully before I spend any. 

But what I appreciate the most about being part of Pass It Back is that I have had to opportunity to build my leadership skills and I’ve grown so much from that. Leadership skills gained from the program have been so useful for me on and off the pitch. At college, I take the role of a group leader who leads my team through doing group homework and group assignments. Before, I used to say no whenever my friends offered me to became their group leader because I used to believe that I was not good enough and I could not do it. But now I know I can!

Last summer, during the 2 month semester break from the college, I decided to apply for an internship at ChildFund Laos’ Finance department (I’m studying finance) and got selected! My two month internship was short but it was really worth it. I gained so much valuable knowledge and experience in terms of finance work and I could also apply skills I’ve learnt from Pass It Back to my internship work, such as making plans, setting goals, communicating well with others, an working as a team. There were of course some challenges at the beginning, but I tried my best, asked when not sure, seeking solutions where there was a problem and learnt from my mistakes. At the end of the 2 month period, the Finance Manager of ChildFund Laos even asked me to extend my internship, which means a lot to me. It means my support and skills are acknowledged and I am proud of that, though I had turn it down to continue my new semester and get back to coaching! 

Pass It Back is a very important program for the development of young people, especially for girls. The program challenges any gender stereotypes and creates an environment where girls and young women are empowered and supported to reach their potential. I want to encourage more girls and young women to join Pass It Back, because I want them to have the chance to learn important skills and develop themselves through sport, like I do, and pass it back to their community.

The program challenges any gender stereotypes and creates an environment where girls and young women are empowered and supported to reach their potential.