COACH Chris Irving is appealing for business sponsorship for Airedale Amateur Boxing Club, which he says is helping to keep youngsters off the streets.
Mr Irving said the club was going from “strength to strength” but needed more sponsors to buy equipment to help train the 20 to 40 club members.
He said: “I believe running the boxing club is extremely important for local youngsters as it helps stop violence in the town as well as keeping children in supervised environment – rather than on the street.
“We are looking for sponsorship from any business interested in getting involved in the local community and helping youngsters become a part of a team that gives them a healthy way to get out aggression.
“There are things that we need for the club such as gloves, punch bags and tracksuits but the sponsorship would also contribute to day-to-day costs of running the club which would be a great help as it is all run voluntarily.”
The club – which holds training sessions four times a week – charges £2 for a two-hour session and enters boxers in the junior and senior novice amateur boxing competition leagues and shows across Yorkshire.
The four-man coaching team has created strong links with local schools and the community since it started in 2002 and its committee members include PC Richard Baker, from Castleford neighbourhood policing team.
Mr Irving, 49, trained as a professional coach with the Irish Amateur Boxing Association before moving to Leeds in 2005. He joined the Airedale club in 2010.
He said: “The connection we’ve made in the community I think will benefit our members and greatly contribute to their training.
“I believe boxing teaches children discipline, self control, concentration, confidence and boosts their fitness levels while teaching them to respect others in the community, which is exactly the message we want our club to promote.”
Anyone aged over nine can join the club which meets on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 5.45pm to 8pm, and on Saturday from 9.30am to 11.30am at the Hill Top Community Centre, Kershaw Avenue, Airedale.
For more information email Mr Irving at firstname.lastname@example.org or call him on 07905 675907.