It was a knockout event at DJ Boxing in Clydach on Wednesday 19th September as members of charities The Leon Heart Fund and Swansea Valley Cardiac Support Group officially presented….
It was a knockout event at DJ Boxing in Clydach on Wednesday 19th September as members of charities The Leon Heart Fund and Swansea Valley Cardiac Support Group officially presented the gym with a lifesaving defibrillator. Proudly displaying the charity logos in the boxing ring, some of the young boxers took five minutes out of their intense training regimes to be part of the presentation.
Anyone who has had any experience with high-intensity physical environments will know that a defibrillator can make all the difference in a moment of crisis and this is exactly why both The Leon Heart Fund and Swansea Valley Cardiac Support Group have teamed up to make more of the local community heart-safe.
Joining The Leon Heart Fund that evening, Swansea Valley Cardiac Support Group were also present as official sponsors. The charity has been working tirelessly since it was set up in 1993 fundraise for local causes and has an impressive background of fundraising and supporting local projects including the Air Ambulance, Cwmtawe Youth Band, various junior sports teams and local martial arts groups. DJ Boxing is the first boxing gym they have worked with, and they aim to continue helping community groups such as this after proving what a difference it can make.
Also present at the evening was one of the newest recruits to the gym, Jay Anwar, who had his first boxing session there last week. Jay was born with tricuspid atresia and pulmonary atresia and has undergone numerous surgeries since his birth. Jay’s mother, Emma Anwar, says that due to his condition Jay often struggles with feeling left out.
“For example,” she says, “the boys had a football match today in school, but with Jay’s condition there was no way he could join in, so he just felt completely left out.”
In an effort to help Jay overcome his struggles and become part of a fun and inclusive community, Jay was welcomed at DJ Boxing where donned a shiny pair of boxing gloves for his first boxing session with a huge smile across his face.
“There isn’t much he can do,” says Emma, “So it is amazing to see him so excited about something!”
From seeing Jay at the gym last week, it is clear that Paul Kennedy, David John and all of the staff and members of the boxing gym have welcomed him with open arms and are very aware of Jay’s specific needs. DJ Boxing prides itself on inspiring confidence in young people and teaching them how to respect and cooperate with others whilst at the gym, something Emma saw a benefit from straight away.
“I definitely think even just from the first session it boosted confidence and made him happier in himself,” says Emma. “It’s also given him something to be proud of, as he hasn’t stopped telling people about it.” Jay is booked to go to his second session this Friday and is already brimming with excitement.
When asked, apparently Jay is also looking forward to “Julie’s amazing pancakes” at the end of a hard session too, which we can all agree is the perfect refuel meal for any self-respecting champ!
by Natalie Ann Holborow