Unlimited Potential at Alliance partner Vulcan – Sonny’s story
14/04/2019 – The sport of boxing and the nurturing environment at Vulcan – an organisation focused on empowering young people in Hull, UK – have had a profound impact on the life of newly turned professional athlete Sonny Taylor. The 24 year old began his involvement with Vulcan, a member of the Fight for Peace Alliance, four years ago when undertaking community service in the grounds of Vulcan’s boxing gym. At that time, Sonny had been given a suspended prison sentence and was dealing with a number of issues in his life.
“It was a one more strike and you’re out sort of thing, I was going out at the weekend, getting into bother and mixing with the wrong sort of kids”, explained Sonny. “I needed something to keep me level again, something to aspire towards.”
While doing his community service, Sonny came across some of the boxing training talking place at Vulcan. “The doors were open and there were some guys sparring in the ring, so I peered through and thought ‘I want some of that’”, says Sonny. Seb Glazer, who heads up Vulcan, admits he was sceptical at first but soon saw Sonny’s huge potential shine through. He has been training the talented boxer ever since, charting his rise and seeing him develop as an integral part of Vulcan, both in and out of the ring. Having competed successfully as an amateur, Sonny turned professional in March 2019, beginning his career with an impressive victory.
“Watching Sonny’s journey over the last four years has been really inspiring – both inside and outside the boxing ring”, explains Seb. “He has helped lead our project and mentor other young people, whilst developing into a hugely exciting boxer. His determination and his drive to succeed have led him to become a professional athlete, with an ever growing fan base. Sonny embodies everything we stand for at Vulcan: youth leadership, using sport as a vehicle for social change, striving for excellence, grit, hard work, courage, passion and ultimately, unlimited potential.”
Vulcan was launched in 2012 with a central ethos of providing positive role models for children and young people to tackle youth violence, anti-social behaviour and obesity through boxing. Since 2015, it has also been a valued member of the Fight for Peace Alliance, exchanging knowledge and good practice with both Fight for Peace and fellow Alliance members in the UK and New York city, and being recognised at the 2017 Fight for Peace Annual Awards.
As well as boxing, the organisation runs education programmes and supports young people with any difficulties they may be facing in life. The positive environment is epitomised by Seb and his team of staff who are all passionate about boxing and its ability to change lives.
That’s certainly something Sonny believes deeply in: “Boxing changed my life”, he says. “It’s never too late to start, you can change your ways any day – you’ve just got to take it by the scruff of the neck and get on with it.”