Fight for Peace host combat sports festival in Jamaica

03/05/2017 – Fight for Peace partnered with Future Champs of Texas, GC Foster College and several sporting federations to host a three-day combat sports festival in Jamaica. Eighty-five young people from Fight for Peace’s six target communities in Kingston were invited to take part in the festival.

The young participants joined with the Jamaican under 19 rugby team for sessions in boxing, wrestling, capoeira and taekwondo, led by coaches from various Jamaican sports federations and US-based Future Champs of Texas. Those present were able to put into practice sporting skills that they had learnt in previous Fight for Peace sports sessions, and were encouraged to interact with young people from different communities, whilst gaining intercultural knowledge and insight through the Future Champs of Texas coaches.

Alongside boxing and martial arts, the participants also took part in personal development sessions. In order to cement a link between sport and personal development in the minds of the young participants, each day of the festival was based around a different theme. The first day of the camp, for example, focused on the theme ‘the ego’, where young people were asked to think about how ego can affect not only your sport, but your daily life choices also.

Jeroma Blagrove of Parade Gardens, Kingston, won a prize at the festival for outstanding participation in sports. “I wish the camp could last longer and that I could come back in the next few months. It was great because we had to work in teams for the whole three days”, said Jeroma.

The coaches were also delighted with how the festival went, enjoying aligning themselves with Fight for Peace’s methodology and learning how to use mentorship in sports to instill values such as integrity and teamwork.

Future Champs of Texas coaches were encouraged by the opportunity to teach and to learn from the participating young people. “For us the camp was a great success. It was great to have so many disciplines under one roof. Hopefully, that’s a precursor of things to come for combat sports in Jamaica”, said Rick Henry, Future Champs of Texas Founder and President.