New program gives kids an alternative to violence

Published: Sep. 17, 2022 at 12:12 AM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - There’s a new innovative program in the area hoping to give kids an alternative to violence.

Here’s how they’re throwing punches and boosting grades.

“Everyone needs a chance and opportunity,” said Gruebal Mixed Martial Arts instructor, Mark Gruebal.

Gruebal, along with other local boxers, is taking time to teach kids in the community life skills using their hands and minds.

“It goes much more than just teaching them about boxing. What we’re trying to get them to do community service once a month, they have to maintain a ‘C’ average in school, and we’re trying to do this for kids who may not be able to afford martial arts,” he said.

Future Fighters of America is a free community program aimed to offer mentorship, boxing classes, and community service for all kids in the CSRA.

The program will be taught by local boxers Dominique ‘Lil Jalapeno’ Roundtree and Fernando Bunch who grew up at this same gym.

“It’s been a great amount of discipline in my life,” said Roundtree. “My coach has definitely been like a mentor to me almost like a father figure and so I kind of want to have the same impact on these kids. I know Fernando, and like I said, Justin also helping. We all want the same thing for our communities.”

Gruebal said: “Coming from a lower income family, it rains deep with me and me to reach back out to the community.”