Otepoti Boxing Club : Strength for suicide prevention.
Tū mai Te Waipounamu! Right in the heart of Southland, a new suicide prevention initiative is making change with the Dunedin youth. This programme is called Boxing for Te Whare Tapa Whā.
The purpose of this programme is to provide rangatahi of Dunedin with key principles through the art of boxing. Teaching them to release their stress in a healthy way, while building a solid platform for a Te Whare Tapa Whā approach to wellness.
The fundamentals of boxing and fitness teaches rangatahi self-discipline, self-respect, respect towards others and strengthens the mind. Based on the four pillars of Te Whare Tapa Whā, this programme also provides mentors for the rangatahi, such as experienced boxing trainers and coaches (many of whom have been affected by suicide and wanting to make a positive change) to provide guidance and positive role models.
In this initiative, there are 15 youth who have committed to a six-month boxing programme, which requires all rangatahi involved to attend at least 2-3 classes a week.
In addition to building physical strength, boxing helps taiohi feel more powerful mentally and gives them the fighting spirit to deal with different challenges in life. Boxing can also instil a sense of achievement which builds confidence self-esteem and a sense of belonging (whanaungatanga).
This unique programme is designed around building character and helping youth deal with their emotions in a safe environment with the support of peers and coaches.
Organisation: Otepoti Boxing Club
*This Whānau/Hapū initiative is supported by Te Au (and Te Rau Ora) through the Māori Suicide Prevention Fund.