‘A boxing website that looks beyond the action in the ring is long overdue. A boxing website that delivers boxing to a wider audience is long overdue. The idea of a good boxing website is to get people interested, keep people interested and not aim too low. Boxing Futures has the right idea.’Steve Bunce, Broadcaster and author of The Fixer
Boxing Futures has been working closely with Centre Circle Events Management to find courses and part time/full time employment for people who have found themselves out of work with very few job prospects. Gary Newman, Director of Centre Circle gave us a few more details on how the match was made.
How have BF worked with centre Circle
Boxing Futures has obtained some educational funding which is enabling us to train people and give them apprenticeships in spectator safety, key skills and industry awareness. We’ve put 90 people through so far and we expect that to keep growing. We’re taking people who have found the job market challenging and given them the training and part time work as stewards at Wembley, Charlton FC, Luton FC, V Festival, Isle Of Wight Festival and other large music events. It gets them into a work ethic and once they’ve got these qualifications a lot of them go on to full time employment, so the process works. We’ve had some great success stories.
What courses do you put people through?
We have apprenticeships in spectator safety and NVQ2s in spectator safety. The Events industry is heavily legislated, so you have to have a level 2 qualification. We can give people a defined career path, because with us they can also obtain their NVQ 3 in spectator safety. Some people have then gone on to get their SIA badges (Security Industry Authority), which then enable them to get jobs with G4S and other big organisations on full time security jobs. We take them raw and teach them some people skills, that approach definitely works.
What sort of feedback have you had from the people on the courses?
Very positive, we don’t get to hear all the feedback because the colleges who fund all the training contact the students direct to find out if they are enjoying the courses, and if they’re getting proper training and treatment. We’ve not had any negative feedback at all.
What advice would you give to people who are thinking of taking up these courses?
If people are out of work and have got no real defined career path, they’ve got nothing to lose and they’ll be earning because they can work at our events as soon as they’ve had an induction. Then they get on the job training and continuous training which enables them to carry on the work.
Who have taken up the courses and what is the age range?
We’ve had ex-boxers, current boxers and boxing fans alike. But of course we recruit from a wide cross section of society, from 18 year olds to people in their 50s. It can be a second career for lots of people, or for mums returning to work.
How easy is it for people find employment once they’re trained?
People can do our events and once they are working with us they can register with other events companies. If they haven’t got a full time job with one employer, we find that people can earn a living wage by working for three or four events companies. They might do Saturday afternoon with us at Charlton, then Saturday night at the 02 or Earls Court with G4S.There’s worse ways to earn money, we had 300 staff at the Champions League Final, we do so many music festivals and we do the fireworks on the Embankment at New Years Eve too.
Too often the media reports on stories of former boxers falling on hard times. For every one of these stories that is reported there are hundreds that remain untold. Boxing Futures wants to help boxers establish a career outside of boxing once their fighting days are over. We will do this by providing industry recognised education packages to current and former boxers, of all disciplines free of charge. This will be funded from revenue raised from the sale of advertising on the site.
Therefore, simply by using the site our readers will be helping to improve the lot of the sportsmen and women who have put so much blood, sweat and tears into the sport.