Fire service leads boxing project to help troubled youngsters

May 27, 2019 | by Matt Halfpenny


A new Sunderland Community Hub (SCH) has been created at the city’s central fire station in Millfield to help young people develop physical and social skills through boxing.

It aims to help turn around the lives of youngsters who have a troubled past.

The young people who attend will be referred by Northumbria Police, Early Help, education teams and other organisations.

Eight TWFRS and County Durham and Darlington Fire Service (CDDFRS) employees have volunteered to work with the young people at the hub, providing them with skills and mentoring to improve their physical and mental health, educational attainment and employability.”

TWFRS’s Grant Brotherton, head of prevention and education, said: “Young people today face many challenges – especially with the ever-present threats of involvement in anti-social behaviour, alcohol and drug misuse, arson and much more.

“Often peer pressure and the lack of guidance can lead young people into trouble that can blight their futures.

“As a service we have to tackle anti-social behaviour on a daily basis. We believe that boxing can be a great way to help young people – both boys and girls – to improve their life skills and divert them away from crime.

The facility, funded by the East Area Committee, will be open two nights per week on a Wednesday and Friday, 6.30pm to 8.30pm, and will cater for young people aged 10 to 18 years.

The hub was formally opened by Sunderland mayor Councillor Lynda Scanlan while professional boxing brothers Thomas and Martin Ward were also on hand to show their support.