Local non-profit uses boxing to reach local youth

Thirty participants showed up to box Monday night.

Photo courtesy of BCB Facebook page

A local non-profit institutes a free boxing program to help teach kids respect and discipline while keeping them off the street.

Building Community Bridges officially began its Jawbreakers program last November.  However, recent donations of boxing bags, gloves, and protective gear have helped bring the program to the next level.

Boxing coach Shad Howard brings 20-plus years of boxing experience to the program, with many of those years working with kids.  He says those who fear boxing is too violent of a sport for kids, are missing the bigger picture of what it brings to their lives, including something just to look forward to.

"Whenever there isn't class, it's like 'oh, come on coach, can we stay later, can we do this, can we do that'.  I'm like, yeah, you just gotta follow directions and it's starting to come.  All the kids are starting to see what they have to do to become what they want to be in life.  This involves school.  I get into their school too.  They have to have discipline at school just like you have to have in here.  That's what I teach them."

Currently the program is open to both high school kids and adults.  The program is free for students, with a minimal-monthly fee for adults.  Howard says a separate adult program is in the works.

The program also continues to look for donors and sponsors.  To learn how you can help, contact Alicia Edwards at aliciaedwardsbcb@gmail.com or call her at 573-616-2845.