In conjunction with Boxology and Cathy Brown, The Lotus Flower Centres are launching Boxing Sisters, a new well-being programme that focuses on boxing and self-defense. Cathy Brown, a retired professional British boxer and certified Cognitive Behavior Therapist (CBT), will be traveling to the centres later this year to launch the initial pilot and train a few select women from the community who will then continue the programme for other women and girls. This will ensure that the programme is accessible to all female residents and sustainable by employing newly-certified trainers.
The Lotus Flower is committed to helping young girls whose lives have been changed by violent conflict. Many of our community members have endured horrific situations, including abduction, rape, sexual slavery, and the deaths of loved ones at the hands of ISIS. With survivors living in rudimentary refugee camps, there is little for girls to do. Women and girls in refugee camps have restricted freedom of movement due to their gender, lack of resources, and lack of protection against gender-based violence. The Lotus Flower Women's Centres provide a safe and supportive physical environment for women and girls to socialize, partake in educational courses and awareness sessions, and gain professional training.
Why boxing? Boxing has many health benefits that go beyond physical fitness.
Boxing is a mental game of physical chess. It teaches strategy and focus. In order to not take a right cross to the jaw, one has to shut out the outside world and its distractions to focus on the opponent.
Boxing is a form of stress relief. It stimulates endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals, and releases tension from the muscles.
Boxing increases self-confidence as much as physical strength. By learning self-defense techniques, women and girls feel more confident and secure knowing that they can protect themselves.
Boxing helps with anger management. By having a physical release, boxing helps anger and trauma move through the body and release from the muscles.
Boxing builds community. A boxer never trains alone – he or she always has a coach and a sparring partner. Boxing Sisters will always train together and by doing so, continue to build friendships and support networks. They can talk freely to each other, share common experiences without fear, and help each other recover from the traumas they have experienced.
Boxing highlights their fighting spirit. It doesn’t create it – it just shines the light on it.