(Photo: Asim, left, pictured with his mentor Leonas.)
Training boxing and gaining inner peace and strength at Fight for Peace
01/03/2017 – London Academy member Asim Beg talks boxing, residential trips and being part of the Fight for Peace family:
Fight for Peace has helped me in many ways that words can’t describe. It is my second home and it has given me hope to achieve my goals and shown me that I am the only person who can make a change. Before Fight for Peace, I didn’t have any goals or anyone to go to for advice and support, I was stuck in a hole and I was desperate to escape and Fight for Peace has helped me do that.
I found out about the Academy through a friend. We were going to a gym, doing weights and that and I said ‘let’s do pads, let’s do some boxing’, and he told me that there was a gym nearby where I could box and it was called Fight for Peace. I came down for an induction and I was nervous because it was all new. I was overwhelmed, I saw the boxing ring and I thought, I am actually doing this! I started the session and I found it really hard and I had to leave for a minute because I was so tired, but Kenny, the Assistant Coach, came out and made sure I was ok and I went back in and the rest is history.
The training keeps me coming back. I was training really hard at first but then it was Ramadan so I had to stop because I was fasting but I kept in touch with Leonas, a Youth Worker, and he invited me to go on a residential trip to Cornwall. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting much but it was the time of my life. I had never been away like that before, without my parents – it was just so amazing, the air was different, the sea air was so fresh. It opened up my mind a lot and I had lots of time to reflect and have some really deep conversations.
I started the Pathways education programme when I was going through a really, really tough time and Leonas encouraged me to do the course because he told me that doing it would be a fresh start. I was really enjoying it but I had to take some time off for personal reasons. I kept coming to Fight for Peace but I couldn’t continue on the course or train. When I am not feeling the best it helps to come to Fight for Peace because I have a really close connection with Leonas and he is guiding me, he has been an incredible role model for me.
Since I joined Fight for Peace, I can see the change that is happening, obviously not everything has been positive but before Fight for Peace I didn’t really have inner peace and I didn’t feel so strong inside. I am still working on this and on being the best I can be every day.
My short term goals are to keep fit and keep training, change some of my habits and be more spiritually connected because that is what keeps me going. I also want to be able to finish Pathways because then I can progress onto other things. In the long term I’d like to go to university to study youth work or study sports science, I don’t know right now. In boxing, my goal is to still train and be in the best shape but I want to have a routine of going to work, coming back and going to training – it will be a part of my life. Boxing is discipline and it is on you and that is the same with life, it is up to you.
Fight for Peace is a place that can change your life, the people here at Fight for Peace, there is always someone to turn to, the more you come, the more you get involved with different people and the more you learn about yourself. The people here are great, it feels like a family and I am never ever going to leave Fight for Peace I can tell you that for a fact!