Restart is the official charity of The Rugby Players Association (RPA) and we are dedicated to supporting professional rugby players suffering from serious injury, illness or hardship.
We provide financial and practical support to players and their families during difficult times, including help with the cost of medical treatment, rehabilitation equipment and disability support. We’re also there when players need emotional support to help with mental health issues, by providing a 24/7 Confidential Counselling Service.
We receive no government or lottery funding so the work we do is funded entirely through voluntary donations and fundraising activity. We completely rely on the support of businesses, rugby supporters, fundraisers, generous donors and the players themselves to raise funds each year for those in need. A considerable amount of pro bono support is given by the Rugby Players Association including staff time, office space and fundraising opportunities at high-profile commercial events.
Former England and Wasps player, Damian Hopley was forced to retire from the professional game in 1998 due to a career-ending knee injury. The lack of support available to professional players at that time motivated Damian to found the RPA later that same year and then Restart as the charitable arm of the organisation in 2001.
We work simultaneously with the RPA to represent players, giving them the voice they deserve and also providing them with support when they have nowhere else to turn.