In this blog, I was going to talk about our Little Dragons programme, but something humbling and touching has happened this week which I want to share with you all.
Our Academy has been shortlisted for a national martial arts ‘Academy of the Year’ award and we were visited on Monday by Moira Spencer, the assessor.
What unfolded that evening has humbled me as I began to explain to Moira about how the Academy had been planned, conceived and constructed. It couldn’t have looked better on the night.
It struck me just what we have achieved and how much of a close family affair it has been. By we, I mean our whole martial arts family and not just our wives, children, parents or extended family who have been a big part of it too.
The students and parents who turned out to record our crowdfunding video, who brought themselves and their children to paint and clean, who approached local companies to provide goods for free, who donated their skills and time, who took part in fundraising.
When I was telling Moira about the instructors, students and parents, I told stories of how I taught Ju Jitsu to them as children and was now teaching their kids, of how parents have sat and watched and been impressed enough to train for themselves too.
We held our AGM the day before and again it amazed me how many of you attended and wanted to be part of this close family.
We held three great classes on Monday evening, and the support from the students and parents in turning up was fantastic. When we have asked for your support it has been overwhelming.
This whole experience has genuinely brought a lump to my throat as it has dawned on me what a superb, supportive and fantastic group of people you all are.
Then if that wasn’t enough, at the end of the night, our adult students presented the Senseis with an engraved silver plate to mark their appreciation of the work we have done in providing this fantastic venue.
Whilst it would be nice, it doesn’t matter whether we win ‘Academy of the Year’ as this whole experience has made me feel like a winner. If others are doing it better - then they deserve the accolade. We find out on May 12th. All I can say is that YOU have made us all so proud and I cannot thank you enough for your support and contributions. In return, I can offer you our continued commitment to change the lives of the people we come into contact with through Ju Jitsu. Keigu (Kind Regards) Sensei