#KOCOVID19 campaign raises £100,000 for England Boxing clubs in just three weeks
April 21, 2020 | by Matt Halfpenny
England Boxing’s #KOCOVID19 campaign has smashed through the £100,000 barrier – just three weeks after being set up.
More than 130 clubs from across the country, who were forced to shut down to comply with the government’s social distancing measures, have taken part.
They hope to protect themselves from the risk of closure at an uncertain time, with many still have to pay for rent, despite losing regular income from subs, membership and shows.
It puts at risk the fantastic community work they do on a daily basis, teaching thousands of people, often in England’s most disadvantaged areas, to box, not to mention the vital projects they undertake on mental health, Parkinson’s, knife and gang crime, holiday hunger, inclusion, extremism and education.
Each club has set up their own fundraising page, which is linked to from the England Boxing website’s #KOCOVID19 home page, and they have been able to use the campaign logo, posters and resources created by the national governing body to aid their fundraising.
England Boxing has also produced two videos – and is set to release a third – where participants ask people to ‘KO COVID-19 – support your local club’.
It encourages all who can to donate to give as much or as little as they can afford and has drawn the backing of the likes of Daniel Dubois and Caroline Dubois, Richie Woodhall, Tommy Coyle ad Paul ‘Silky’ Jones, as well as a host of club boxers and coaches.
A number of clubs have also come up with innovative ways to promote their respective fundraising efforts.
Several clubs, including Scunthorpe ABC, Wimborne ABC, Bar Boxing ABC and St Paul’s Boxing Academy, have taken part in a ‘toilet roll challenge’ video, while others, such as Nottingham’s Phoenix ABC, have done collective sponsored runs.
Alfie Lee, of Maidstone ABC, has completed a 25-mile sponsored bike ride, Kent Gloves ABC a press-up challenge and Ray Bennett, of Biddulph ABC, and Chadwell St Mary ABC boxers, a head shave.
Thanks to the generosity of individuals and businesses, a grand total on £106,019 has so far been raised – with the hope of more to come.
“For so many of the young people in our sport, their local boxing club is a sanctuary, and it would be beyond devastating to so many if any club was put at risk in these difficult times,” said England Boxing’s Southern Counties Club Support Officer Avoen Perryman, who came up with the initial concept.
“That’s why it’s such great news that so many clubs have run with the idea – and that this campaign has had this positive impact.
“All the videos, social media posts and comments from the boxing community and beyond is so heartwarming, and is a testament to the family and community spirit that boxing has long been known for.”
You can find out more and donate to a club of your choice by going to: www.englandboxing.org/clubs/kocovid19/ and also follow on social media using the hashtag #KOCOVID19