AFL 2022: Brisbane Lions midfielder Hugh McLage prepares for ‘eye-popping’ experience in Nepal

Hugh McCluggage will be turning into an English teacher this AFL offseason.

The Brisbane Lions star midfielder is expected to spend two weeks in Nepal, sandwiched between India and China, with World Youth International from 1 November, and what he expects to be a “spectacular” experience.

McCluggage usually veered toward more mainstream international travel, including the United States, but several factors led him in this direction instead.

It started earlier this year with a conversation about life after football with Marianna Crowe, the Lions’ personal excellence and well-being coordinator.

McCluggage won’t turn 25 until next March and has just 130 games in his AFL career.

camera iconHugh McCluggage will be based in Kathmandu, Nepal’s capital, during his two-week residency. credit: attached

What he knows is that he wants to make a difference, and World Youth International’s charity work in Nepal piqued his interest.

This non-profit organization opened a school in Nepal in late 1999. Nepal has the third lowest literacy rate in the world and aimed to train local teachers to provide a rich and dynamic education.

It had 24 students then, and now has nearly 650 students, with an annual acceptance rate of 96%, making it one of the top schools in the developing world.

“I did some research and it’s a beautiful and picturesque place and I spoke to people who have been there and they[Nepalis]are very kind people. He said

“It’s clearly a third world country and very poor, but World Youth International has done a lot of great work there.

“They send nurses to the villages to volunteer and help people with their basic health needs. They also have a school there, which is doing very well and has a lot of students. increase.

“They don’t speak much English, so there will be a language barrier, but I’m really excited to go there and have fun with the kids.”

McCluggage has raised over $32,000 to purchase cricket, football and other sporting goods including uniforms, pianos and keyboards.

At first he thought the $25,000 goal was a fantasy, so he was overwhelmed by the “amazing” generosity.

“It just gives them more opportunities. It’s something that I really appreciated growing up where I lived, but I also gave it to some of the kids there. We want to be able to deliver,” said McCluggage. He said.

“If one more person in the future goes into the music industry or does sports for the rest of their lives, I feel I have achieved my goal and I am really looking forward to it.”

McCluggage begins a program of sports and creative arts, then spends two weeks immersing himself in life in Nepal, riding school buses, teaching English, and playing sports with his students.

“It’s a chance to get out of your comfort zone a little bit,” he said.

“I said I hope I can help one or two kids out there and get them interested in something else, but I don’t think living that kind of life is my thing. I think it’s something that really catches the eye.

“I’m not quite sure what it will be like, but if I can take some different lessons from it and come back a better person, that’s the goal of the journey, too.”

>>> You can donate to Hugh McLage’s trip to Nepal here AFL 2022: Brisbane Lions midfielder Hugh McLage prepares for ‘eye-popping’ experience in Nepal

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