George’s Story and the Boxing Project

I wanted to join the Boxing at one point in my life,
but never really got into it. I suffer depression right,
and the result of depression is quite hard going. Battling it and battling it for years upon years… That was just down to losing my dad and that,
which was quite hard going. At that point, it was just drugs in a loop system,
just drugs, drink, drugs, drink, drugs, drink… An ongoing battle… My worker, he came to me and asked:
“Do you wanna come along to the Boxing Project?” I said “Aye”. So I joined it. The Boxing Project is just helping people that,
maybe I’d say, down in a luck a bit. Things like that. And then getting their fitness levels up,
and the “feel good” factor kicks in, and it helps them deal with their problems,
things like that… A big change in their fitness,
their looks, they even look better, and… They seem to be happier, you know,
their demeanour… Everything, it’s all positive. It does make a big difference, yeah.
They’re happier and whatever it is they’re doing they seem to be happier. The Boxing Project was something
that service users wanted to do. It had never actually been done before so, at the very early beginning we didn’t know
how we were even gonna do this. It was something that they were interested in. The Boxing Project is a place where people could go,
they could do Boxercise fitness, there’s no violence or anything to do with. But it’s really a place just to get fit and healthy. It started with engagement with service users. And… there was a massive problem and issue where there was certain things on for service users but it wasn’t always well attended. When we asked service users what things
they wanted to do, they came up with Boxing. And that was really how it started,
but it has massively developed from there. I see massive benefits for people in the Boxing Project. The things I can physically see is
a change in their physique, confidence levels,
skin appearance when not using substances, when not doing alcohol, and most of them will tell you that
they have stopped these altogether. And the other big difference I see is… There’s a calmness about them, because some of the people join because they’ve got problem with anger. I see massive changes and differences
within people at the project. I’ve came on leaps and bounds now through the Boxing. It’s opened up a lot of different branches for me, Like… Basically I feel in myself…
I feel… I don’t know. I feel like life’s got better. Since I been at the Boxing,
my connection with people has got better. I see my complexion is a lot better,
my body is a lot better. My fitness levels were no really good, But I find now, my fitness is well sky-high now. Even like, I’ve been looking into new diets as well. Because I’ve been, like, eating more fruit and veg… Eating fruit and veg, and fish and… you know. Now I’m an Ambassador. We basically promote the Boxing
to get more people involved in Boxing. We do this program called the ASDAN,
and it’s basically… I think it’s six to eight weeks course, through the Boxing. That’s how I became a Boxing Ambassador. We go around the hostels trying to get
more people into Boxing, which basically I find it’s a good way of health.
Health and wellbeing. And people doing something… Like off drugs, drink, crime and stuff like that. We go to the hostels to do demonstrations. Well, if anybody like getting involved,
then I will give them my card. If they come to the gym they can look for me
and I can help them. I’ve been telling people, right, you can come along
and just sit and watch us. It’s hard for some people, but if they’ve got…
Just small steps. You know, it was like me at first.
It was quite hard at first. I look at myself now and I’m like
“Well”, you know what I say, “Wow”. It’s mad, eh.
It’s mad.

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