Young people are lazy, overweight and spend all their time sitting in front of a screen, right?
Well, not in Manor Park. Thanks to a Near Neighbours-supported initiative called Basic Sports and Fitness, more than 30 young people have taken part in a programme of activities inspired by the 2012 Games.
The scheme was set up by John Bosco Waigo, a Ugandan former boxer who now lives in east London. Having competed at the 1988 Olympics himself, John was perfectly placed to inspire a new generation of young people to get involved in non-contact boxing, running and general fitness training.
John’s aim was to bring together young people from diverse backgrounds in the local area and give them the chance to get to know eachother while learning more about health and fitness – and of course having fun.
As well as the physical training, the young people took part in a healthy eating workshop and also attended a local celebration of the City Safe scheme – a community response to violence.
John says this helped them to build self-esteem and discipline, “Parents have written to show their appreciations for the changes they have witnessed in their children – physical and behavioural changes.”
This isn’t the end of the project though. Three young people have now progressed onto a local boxing club to continue their training, while John is keen to help more local teenagers keep fit and healthy.
If you are involved in a project bringing together people of different faiths and backgrounds in eastern London and want to know if Near neighbours could support you, contact Revd Tim Clapton: firstname.lastname@example.org / 0207 780 1600.