By Ian Huddleston, Community Organiser
Dinnington boxing group have continued to work after signing their constitution and putting on trial classes by having sessions throughout the summer at The Lyric. These have been successful, with the young people continuing to come back and they are enjoying taking part.
The next step was to try and attract more young people to the sessions so the group looked at ways in which this could be achieved. A meeting was set up with the head teacher of Dinnington High School, who has seen the good work already achieved by the group on twitter and through conversations with me a Rotherham Federation community organiser.
I met with head teacher and vice principle Rebecca and Debs last week (unfortunately David couldn’t make it due to work commitments) and talked about what the group had done up until now, the aim of the group and how we think the group and the school could work together.
Rebecca was really behind what the group was doing and thought that it was just what the school needed. We talked about how the sessions would be run and how we could separate the classes for the younger and older students.
The school agreed to have the group in 2 times per week as part of an after school club, one for the younger students (year 7-9) and one for the older students (year 10 and 11) so they can run the sessions specifically for their needs.
This really shows that there is a need in the area for the group and it has the full backing not only of the school, but also the Mayor and local Councillors have given their backing and support.
The group have now set up a bank account and a funding bid of £4,000 has been submitted to South Yorkshire Police Crime Commissioner, which will pay for 1 session per week for 12 months, all of the equipment needed – which has been agreed it will be stored at the school – and training so the group can train up another coach to cover or can help if the group numbers become high. Another “awards for all” bid will be put in this week for £9,000 which will pay for a further 2 sessions per week for the year, plus equipment, training and media costs so they can run another weekly session at The Lyric or High Nook.
In the meeting with the school, it was also discussed how Rotherham Federation can help them with engaging their students with the community and help them set up a community garden, so the students are able to grow food, maintain it and look after it.
Further meetings with the head teacher are to be arranged to plan out the community gardens, and to work with volunteers to set this up. Also, to arrange projects over the term such as litter picks with the students around Dinnington and “random acts of kindness” (3 weeks up to Feb half term) to try break down generational boundaries within the community.