JT's Friends of SOHK A little bit about me... Sport has always been a big part of my life. As a youth team rugby club coach today and in my early years, where I represented schools and clubs across a range of sports such as; cricket, hockey, table tennis, athletics, tennis, rowing and football. However, my love of rugby ahead of the other sports was evident from an early age. I loved the team element and the challenge that it provided, both physical and mental. I loved the bond you built with your team mates and the friendships you made with the opposition, who you played against in the week for your school and then perhaps played alongside at representative level. Rugby for me, was about passion and aggression, but importantly also about sportsmanship, discipline, enjoying success and dealing with disappointment. It taught me life lessons. “These lessons helped me get through difficult times growing up, witnessing the destructive combined forces of alcoholism, family break up, recession, and suicide within my family. All issues which were not in my control, rugby was my constant.” I was very good at rugby, I could trust the people I was surrounded by when playing it and it gave me an outlet for my aggression and frustration but a huge sense of belonging and achievement. I went on to play in the black and gold of Wasps RFC for 4 years before an injury put a halt to further honors or potentially a full professional career. This was again incredibly difficult to deal with, but the lessons and support of rugby described earlier made me realise I had to pick myself up and forge a new path. This path eventually led me into the city and financial services where I have built a career as a wealth manager working for some of the largest banks globally, advising some of the most successful people across various industries. Why SOHK? I have been involved with SOHK since almost the very beginning of its formation as a charity. I had seen the TV program on Sky Sports, but a chance meeting with the founder, and now close friend, Ken Cowen, allowed me to fully understand the way in which SOHK help people to cope with the challenges that life throws at them through the power of rugby. “The early days of my involvement with SOHK were very cathartic, as I had not really allowed myself to reconcile the challenges I had faced as teenager, and just how much rugby had helped me to get through them. It meant that I was immediately an ambassador of SOHK in my head, so I had to get involved.” Since then I have donated time and energy to help the charity build its profile within rugby and within the city of London. I have also been a regular financial donor to their campaigns and watch with huge pride as the charity has grown and been able to expand its reach, now touching the lives of hundreds of adults and children across the UK and internationally through affiliated programs. Why I've become a Club Ambassador? We live in the age of digital eco-systems and social media, where the power of a collective group of people, doing a small amount at an individual level can make long lasting and significant impact. As a Club Ambassador I hope to build a support network of like minded people from my eco-system, who for the price of around the cost of a pint can make huge impacts. Please help me use the power of rugby to change lives. Please support me in Being A Friend of SOHK.