Celebrating the achievements of 2019 at our London Academy

16/12/2019 – Young people, staff members and Fight for Peace supporters gathered at our London Academy on Wednesday 11th December to celebrate their collective achievements in 2019. Front and centre of this event were the young members of Fight for Peace who consistently inspire through their accomplishments across Fight for Peace’s programmes and activities. Awards were presented to those young people who, over the course of the past twelve months, have stood out through their outstanding achievements, with the areas celebrated being based on and reflecting Fight for Peace’s five values – Embracing, Champion, Solidarity, Inspiring and Courage.

Young people recognised at the event included those that have inspired in their actions inside and outside of the sporting arena, those that have gained essential skills and employment through their hard work and focus, those that have supported others in pursuit of their goals and those that have demonstrated leadership in supporting the mission of Fight for Peace. The ceremony also highlighted the efforts of Fight for Peace’s six Jack Petchey Achievement Award winners – young people who are recognised for going above and beyond in their quest to achieve their goals – while an exciting special announcement revealed plans for Fight for Peace members to participate in an arctic expedition in 2020.

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The awards ceremony also marked the official opening of the new and improved Fight for Peace London Academy and provided an apt moment to say thank you to our wonderful supporters who made this development possible. Thanks to this generous support, the Fight for Peace London Academy has changed beyond recognition in recent years, both physically and in the resulting support and access to opportunities that it is able to offer young people.

In particular, combat sports facilities have been refurbished and expanded with the addition of a purpose built weights room, a martial arts dojo and a shower and changing room block, new purpose built classrooms and a training room have been built and, most recently, a new centrepiece and entrance, the Hub, has been added, creating an essential space to welcome Fight for Peace members, and provide specialist support to them.

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On a practical level, these improvements to the Academy facilities have enabled Fight for Peace to engage more young people through increased sports sessions – seeing in the process our members win national titles in judo, boxing and Olympic weightlifting – and support young people to gain the qualifications, employability skills and confidence they need to get on and progress in their careers and their lives. These new spaces have also been invaluable in allowing Fight for Peace to serve as a training hub for over 30 community organisations from Glasgow to Croydon who, through our global Alliance, adapt the Fight for Peace methodology in support of young people in their localities.