EFC Co-Founders Invited to Parliament to Speak on Mental Health

England Boxing joined Empire Fighting Chance co-founders Martin Bisp and Jamie Sanigar at the House of Commons this week, to discuss the role of boxing in improving mental health.The All Party Parliamentary Group on Sport and Mental Health was organised by the Sport and Recreation Alliance, and featured speakers from a number of sports, as well as mental health charity MIND.England Boxing’s Head of Development, Ron Tulley, explained that many clubs in England work with individuals with some form of mental health difficulty, and that England Boxing has used investment from Sport England to showcase some of this work, with similar projects now taking place in other regions.This short film explains some of the work the coaches at Empire Fighting Chance are doing.[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xEq_YuXnKfk[/embed]Jamie and Martin from Empire Fighting Chance explained that the club had a strong tradition of working with deprived communities in and around Bristol. The club runs 16 different outreach projects, and testimonies from a club member described how regular boxing exercise had given him new focus, improved his self-esteem, helped him lose weight and come off medication, got himself back into work and improved his relationship with his wife and daughter.They said: ‘We hope that by spreading the word on our mental health work we can expand our programmes and make a difference to more lives across Bristol and nationally.‘There needs to be a credible, inclusive sports offer and for those in charge to accept that sport is an alternative to medication.’England Boxing requested a government-led strategy that recognised the role of sport, and in particular boxing, in mental health, and highlighted a steering group led by MIND which aims to create a short workshop top help coaches and club leaders recognise and understand how some of their members are likely to be influenced by a mental health condition.Pictured: England Boxing's Ron Tulley with Martin Bisp and Jamie Sanigar of Empire Fighting Chance at the Houses of Parliamentparliament

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