IRISH CLUB KO’s OPPOSITION TO WIN COVETED AWARDS TITLE

Irish sporting legend Barry McGuigan surprises Monkstown Boxing Club’s BoxClever programme with news that it has been voted the UK’s best Education project

Former world champion Barry McGuigan today delivered the knock-out news to Monkstown Boxing Club’s BoxClever project that they have won a new title – a National Lottery Award.

With more than 7,700 public votes there was no need for the judges’ scorecards as they were named Best Education Project in this year’s National Lottery Awards – the annual search to find the most popular Lottery-funded projects.

They will now receive a £2,000 cash prize, an iconic National Lottery Awards trophy and will attend a star-studded Awards ceremony, The National Lottery Stars, broadcast on BBC One on 21 September.

BoxClever provides sport-related work placements and community-based coaching sessions for disadvantaged young people living in Monkstown, Rathcoole and surrounding areas of North Belfast. It operates through schools and aims to reduce crime levels and improve the career prospects of local young people.

Barry McGuigan said: “I am delighted to present Monkstown Boxing Club’s BoxClever project with a National Lottery Award for winning the education category.

“They really deserve this accolade. It is great to see them using a sport like boxing to help young people better themselves. The dedication of the staff and their tireless work in the gym and around the club has produced some incredible results. National Lottery players can be proud to have supported a fantastic project such as this one.”

Paul Johnston, Project Manager, Monkstown Boxing Club, added: “Boxing, along with many other sports, can deliver many benefits and have a huge impact on the lives of young people.

“It teaches students discipline and the importance of dedication and commitment which, in turn, helps create positive attitudes and build self-esteem which is vital, especially amongst groups who may have behavioural issues or lack confidence.

“It is a great honour to have been recognised by the public in this way and to win a National Lottery Award is fitting recognition of all the hard work of our staff, directors and volunteers and of course, the young people themselves. I would like to thank everyone who voted for us.”

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