Free Self-Defense Seminar benefiting Kingsville Boxing Club at risk youth is happening on Saturday, December 03, 2022 at 10:00AM CST at Street Jitsu - Dallas and It's Free
"Street Jitsu Dallas is happy to host another Free Self-Defense seminar. As with all of Street Jitsu's past free seminars, 100% of ALL donation proceeds will go towards charity. The charity for this event is very near and dear to my heart because this charity, the Kingsville Boxing Club, was responsible for saving and changing the course of my life over 25 years ago. "
" I was arrested for theft at 14 years old, when I was caught stealing (to try and help my single mom raise my 5 younger brothers and only sister/ at that time government assistance was not available to my family which made us 3rd world country poor). During the trial with my court appointed public defender the judge offered me 2 options. Option 1 was jail time at Texas Youth Correctional (Juvenille Prison) and Option 2 was two years deferred adjudication probation (clean record after completion of probation period) by becoming a member of the Kinsgville Boxing Club. After initially telling the judge that I didn't want to do no stupid boxing, I wised up and chose Option 2." -Coach Dennis
"The Free Self-Defense seminar will be held at Street Jitsu Dallas, 2001 Gould St. #300, Dallas, TX 75215 972-330-1266 firstname.lastname@example.org "
"During the seminar we will be teaching and practicing self-defense techniques that include martial arts such as Boxing, Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai/Kickboxing, Wrestling and MMA. This free, all ages seminar is open to the public but you must order your ticket for entry to attend this event. All academies are welcome. No experience or athletic ability required. Signed waivers will be required for anyone wanting to participate in the seminar." -Street Jitsu Dallas
In 1995, Jaime Cantu started the boxing club with a small group of kids. Two years later, in 1997, Cantu became a member of USA Boxing and he formed the Kingsville Boxing Club. In 2002, they moved into their current location. Since then, Cantu’s fighters have gone on to win 15 championship belts including the WBC, NABF, ABF, and several Texas State Titles.
Jaime Cantu was born in Los Angeles, California and would come to Kingsville to visit relatives with his mother. He was enrolled briefly at Kleberg elementary, as well as Memorial Middle School, but continued to move back and forth between California and Texas. During Junior High he moved back to Los Angeles to live with his brother until the 11th grade. Cantu said his brother was murdered in LA and his mother went to get him and brought him back to Kingsville where he stayed until he graduated from HM King High School in 1982.
Cantu said Los Angeles was trouble and at the time he came back to high school, his attitude was not towards success. Cantu said, “there was one teacher that began to influence me, counsel me, and give me a chance.” Cantu said, “Edna Figueroa (“Mrs. Fig”) helped guide me in the right direction.” He also credits Mr. Leo Ramos with helping him to start down the path to success. He said, “up until that point, no adult in my life had ever taken the time to show me that they cared”. Cantu said he began to look towards his future and after graduation, he joined the military. He spent 23 years in the United States Army where he was assigned to infantry, supply, combat engineer, legal specialist and recruiter. He also spent 2 years as a recruiter for the National Guard. He retired as an E7 Sgt. First Class. Cantu said that he never forgot where he came from and those that influenced his life.
After retirement he wanted to help kids who may be in a similar situation that he had been in. That’s when he formed his boxing club. “This is not just about boxing, its about making a difference and giving these kids a chance to become great.” Inside the Boxing club the “boxing ring” is obvious to see, however it’s what’s hidden from plain view that is at the heart of the organization. There is a classroom filled with desks and an athlete’s bible on each one. Cantu said that he checks his athlete’s grades and if they are not doing well they are required to sit in the classroom and attend tutoring for an hour before they are allowed to train. Cantu said, “I offer a free membership to the gym to college students in exchange for them tutoring our athletes.” The Kleberg County Juvenile Court also sends students to his club as part of their probation. They must complete six months to a year and Cantu gives updates on their progress. Cantu said, “Kleberg County Judge Rudy Madrid offers them the option to come here instead of a detention center”. He said, “they must attend tutoring and then train with us till they complete the program”.
The Kingsville Boxing Club also teaches classes on etiquette such as how to eat at a table in formal situations and other life skills. Cantu said, “we’ve got to be there for them”. He said the question that we need to be asking is “Who is not doing enough”. Cantu said, “all kids can be reached” he also praised the teachers in the schools and said “we need to protect our teachers who also do so much for them”. Cantu also has a museum inside the club. It is filled with Kingsville’s boxing history that dates back to the 1950’s. From old photographs to news paper articles one can find plenty of information on the history of the sport.
Cantu said that the gym may have to close in the future. The roof needs to be replaced and every time it rains they scramble to cover it with tarps and try and keep the inside dry. He said they are no longer able to do patch work. Cantu said they need about 60K in donations to put a new roof on the building. They recently received a ten thousand dollar donation from the Kleberg County Commissioner's Court but they are still far away from their goal.
Cantu said, "we are a non-profit and only charge $15 to be a member of the gym and $25 to be in the boxing program." Cantu said, "the plea for help is real, we are seriously discussing shutting down."
Cantu said that he also takes his boxers on field trips and competitions. They also collect food every Saturday for St. Paul AME food pantry. Each month during the trash off days he has 3 crews that go out into the community. The first crew picks up brush and the other two pick up trash in the alleys all over town. Code Enforcement also calls them to assist elderly with mowing their lawns Cantu said, "we are giving these kids a chance and also teaching them to give back to the community. "He said, "pound for pound we are the best youth organization that gives back to our community." Cantu said he currently has a fighter that is up and coming and someone to be on the look out for. He said, "Eli Mendietta 21 years old was a sparring partner with Lil Oscar and other champs."
Mendietta will be fighting soon in front of a promoter and if he is picked up will be on the path to becoming the contender at the Kingsville Boxing Club. Cantu said they have eight competitive boxers and on any given night there will be about thirty people training or attending tutoring. Anyone from the age of 8-35 is eligible to join as amatuer boxers. Anyone under the age of eight can join if a parent or guardian stays with them.
Cantu has been married to Mary Ann Cantu for 37 years. He has 4 daughters and one son. He also has seven grandchildren.
The Kingsville Boxing Club is located at 525 S. 12th St. in Kingsville, Texas, 78363. Donations can be made directly to Kingsville Boxing Club to by calling 361-728-3955 and they can also be reached by email at email@example.com
*Donations can also be made here on Eventbrite whenever you select your tickets to attend our Free Self-Defense Seminar at Street Jitsu Dallas, 2001 Gould St. #300 Dallas, TX 75215
**I was blessed to be a part of Kingsville Boxing Club's at risk youth program back in 1995. Without the Kingsville Boxing Club program I would have ended up in prison, dead or addicted to drugs. Today I have 3 adult children, 25, 22 & 20 and one 2 month old granddaughter. I own www.streetjitsu.com which currently has 4 locations in Justin TX, Roanoke TX, Dallas TX and Tahlequah Oklahoma. I also own www.rqsinc.com for over 20 years. Please help me in giving back to the Kingsville Boxing Club for not only saving my life but the lives of other at risk youth. Thank you for your donation and God bless you!
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