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Boxing project to tackle ASB a success

A YOUTH boxing project set up to help tackle anti-social behaviour in Trumpington has been hailed a success.

Fourteen young people from Trumpington Community College took on the 12 week, Project Southpaw, challenge which saw them channel their efforts into a sport which would teach them about discipline, control, camaraderie and promote a healthy lifestyle.

It was a joint initiative between the Cambridge South Neighbourhood Police Team, Cambridge City Council and the college with funding from the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner through the Youth and Community Fund.

Lead coaches from Albion Boxing Academy in Cherry Hinton Road Gary Davidson and Paula Wells created the sessions and passed on skills and techniques as well as introducing fitness activities in a fun and team building way, developing self-discipline and cohesion.

Sergeant Kiri Mazur said: “The sessions have been a great opportunity for us to build a better relationship with the participants and our partners. Project Southpaw has seen a drop in detentions, increase in school attendance, a reduction in the number of calls for police service in the area and an increase in trust between the participants and police officers.”

Active Lifestyles Officer for Cambridge City Council, Joe Notarnicola said: “Project Southpaw was created to help young people step away from criminal behaviour and spend their time in a more positive way. Boxing, albeit sounds frightening, is a great way for young people to learn valuable life skills and also learn about themselves. Not only did we see an improvement in the boxing but in behaviour in school and the community. We are really pleased with the outcome of the project and hope to continue it going forward.”

Acting Police and Crime Commissioner, Ray Bisby added: “Over the last year, 16 projects have received funding from our Youth and Community Fund helping young people across the county lead more fulfilling lives. It’s heart-warming to see grass root projects like this make such a difference to young people’s lives.”