Two boxing projects in South Yorkshire have walked away with national awards.
Fariyah Safah, from Sheffield, has been named the Sport England Sportivate Participant of the Year in recognition of her contribution and outstanding commitment to sport, whilst Sport FX South Yorkshire Satellite Club took bronze in Sport England’s Satellite Club Awards that were held in the Houses of Parliament.
The duo received their awards from Minister for Sport and Tourism, Tracey Crouch MP and England Rugby World Cup winner Maggie Alphonsi MBE.
Fariyah took part in female-only boxing classes in the One Nation Women’s Sportivate project. Although apprehensive in the beginning, upon attending her first class, Fariyah was reassured to find supportive coaches in a female- only environment.
To help overcome her anxiety, and to make it easier for other young women to sign up, Fariyah developed a ‘fitness friends’ programme which encouraged young women to buddy up with a female friend or family member for moral support. Fariyah now acts as an ambassador for the project, actively encouraging more Yorkshire women to try boxing.
Accepting the award, Fariyah said: “If it wasn’t for the Sportivate sessions held at One Nation Community, I wouldn’t be involved in sport, not to mention have my new role as a sports coach and mentor.
“Through One Nation Women’s female only classes, I got the support I needed to overcome my inhibitions and learn how to box. I am delighted that now I can give something back – and help other women.”
The Sport FX boxing project began as a way of offering young people a positive adrenaline filled activity. In a partnership with South Yorkshire Police, South Yorkshire Sport, England Boxing, and local community clubs, the satellite boxing clubs are delivered by qualified coaching staff alongside police community support officers.
Offering a safe and fun environment to develop boxing techniques, once up to speed many of the participants’ progress to local boxing clubs.
Satellite clubs like Sport FX South Yorkshire are extensions, or outposts of community sports clubs which are established in a new venue, usually a secondary school or college and specifically target the 11-25 age group.
Craig Butcher from Sport FX South Yorkshire said: “It’s an absolute honour to be recognised in this national awards. Our project’s success is down to the hard-work and dedication of the team as well as the exemplary attitudes of the young people who take part.
“We recently celebrated Sport FXSY’s fifth anniversary and it is rewarding to see how the project has grown and how many young people we are now engaging with.”
Nigel Harrison, chief executive of South Yorkshire Sport said: “We are delighted projects and participants across South Yorkshire have been recognised for their hard work and fantastic provision.
“The finalists are providing opportunities for inactive young people to enjoy sport for the rest of their lives. We are proud to support such great work which is making a real difference in our communities.”