1. Tell us what you do.
Warrior Martial Arts provides expert coaching to everyone regardless of background, gender, age, or possible disabilities. We are now running our own community fitness centre to provide services that promote health and fitness such as dance, Zumba and other fitness classes.
2. What is your proudest achievement?
Our proudest achievement, to date, has been setting up a permanent space for our community activities to take place in. We previously hired out halls and churches, but with the help of our students, the local community (who showed a strong interest in our project) and our links with other local martial arts groups, we were able to raise the money needed to secure the lease on a building and create our own purpose built space for our community.
3. What is your experience of support received from SCVO
Our current experience with SCVO has been the advice and support from Libby, who has been great at showing us the options available to our small group and give us clear information with which, to make a much more informed decision regarding our future direction. We have also been pointed in the direction of some fantastic local links who I am sure will be a great help to us in future.
4. What is the most valuable lesson you have learnt about working with people in Sandwell?
That we have a very strong community. In spite of our not so great current crime rate and publicity, the people of Sandwell are willing to step in and support local projects such as ours. The lesson we have found most valuable has been knowing where to find the common ground to bring everyone together in support of a shared community goal.
5. What are your plans for the future and some of the challenges you face?
Our plans for the future are to increase the amount of activities we can provide, as well try and provide opportunities for the local community to build their own skills through us. We believe that through our space we can provide not just a place for martial arts but a space for all round health, wellbeing and growth.
Some of our key challenges are being able to drum up support for funding outside of our activities that we run, and identifying current needs of the community. There is also a bit of a racial and cultural divide which we will have to contend with in order to really bring the whole of the community together.
6. How can SCVO help to support your organisation in the future?
SCVO can help us, by providing us, with up to date local information that would be beneficial to our group and our aims. Also, by being able to shed light on our group and activities to others to generate more interest would be a massive help.