First results from “The Gloves of Hope” projects
Ves Boxing Team organised a boxing seminar/practice in Havana in July 2019. Our team was aware how difficult the situation in Cuba was. During our stay, we donated new boxing equipment to various boxing schools, coaches and kids. The seminar and our donations helped us forge strong links there.
Following the seminar we had a much better grasp of how difficult the situation was, and realised we could bring about positive change for those kids. A few months later we organised some events to collect funds and boxing equipment. We turned to several companies, boxing schools and sports fans in Belgium.
We got in touch with the Cuban embassy, and also with the Belgian and Cuban boxing federations. We chose 2 boxing schools for the project and collected funds and equipment. On March 11, 2020 we left for Cuba on our first mission of solidarity.
The mission was a success! We furnished two schools with new material and established contacts with coaches. We also visited several other boxing schools to prepare our next mission.
Boxing accompanied and monitored by professionals will provide kids with better chances to succeed later in life. Discipline, self-esteem and the values of the sport will be of crucial importance, as in addition to the sporting element, they will improve the kids’ psychological development. The norms and values taught through the sport will help kids integrate better in society, develop their personalities and contribute to the prosperity of their country. Social projects like these could prove very beneficial to Cuban society.
In 2009 the International Olympic Committee announced that women boxing will be included in the London Olympics in 2012. It is a sport practiced all over the world. Lack of an organised process and infrastructure prevents it from being a competitive sport in Cuba. Therefore it is our desire, together with the Cuban Boxing Federation, to assist in developing boxing infrastructure in the country and to open a boxing school exclusively for women.
Providing opportunities, improving living and sporting conditions for kids, women boxing, coaching and practicing boxing on local and national level
Our missions are followed and documented by one of the best Cuban professional photographers – Judel Linares. We would like our photo stories to show people the difficulties these kids and women face in Cuba.
We work together with Belgian and foreign organisations, the Cuban embassy in Belgium, the Cuban and Belgian Boxing Federations, Olympic coaches and boxers who became ambassadors of our missions.
We would also like later to replicate this success story in other countries.