Reclaiming lives through exercise

Reclaiming lives through exercise
Ange (not her real name), a teenager at a girls' home, working out with a wall ball to prepare for Operation Broken Wing (OBW), an annual fundraising event started in 2010 by Innervate CrossFit, a CrossFit company, to raise funds for youth at risk.
PHOTO: The New Paper

Ange (not her real name) never met her mother until she was 12 because she was cared for by relatives.

Being moved from one home to another confused her and she never understood why this happened to her and why her mother abandoned her. She has also never met her father.

She had behavioural problems and played truant at school.

When she was 14, her mother called a girls' home to take her in as she was beyond parental control.

Now, at 15, she's trying to help other troubled youths reclaim their lives - through exercise.

She was an active teen at the home and was encouraged to take part in Operation Broken Wing (OBW), an annual fundraising event started in 2010 by Innervate CrossFit, a CrossFit company, to raise funds for youth at risk. CrossFit is a fitness programme that originated in the US.

For the second time this year, OBW has chosen Reach Community Services Society (RCSS), a charitable organisation that provides counselling, senior, family and youth services, as its beneficiary.

The event will be held tomorrow at *Scape Sky Terrace L4 and involves exercise regimes of push-ups, box jumps and burpees.

Each participant will have one minute to do as many repetitions as they can at each of the five stations. For every repetition, a sponsor will donate an amount of money.

Said Ange: "This is my second time being involved in Operation Broken Wing. I may not be able to help financially, but I can help physically by the number of repetitions I do at each station."

OBW hopes to raise $120,000 to fund Reach Youth programmes to benefit at-risk youth.

Some of the Reach Youth programmes include sports and arts activities like dance, football and kayaking.

Said Ange: "What I like about CrossFit is that it is challenging. It helps me not just physically, but it also teaches me to stay focused."

Another participant in Operation Broken Wing is Wei Wei, 18, who is in a boys' home for rioting.

He said: "My friends told me about Operation Broken Wing and this will be my first time being involved.

"Not only can I have fun at the event, I can also help others like me at the same time."

To prepare for this event, 19 at-risk youth went through two CrossFit training sessions with Mr Lionel Choong, 26, the director of Innervate CrossFit and OBW.

Mr Choong said: "We decided to work with RCSS again this year as we believe in what they do, in terms of the support and counselling that they give to youth at risk."

What I like about CrossFit is that it is challenging. It helps me not just physically, but it also teaches me to stay focused. - Ange, 15

About the event

WHAT: Operation Broken Wing (OBW)
WHEN: Tomorrow, 9.30am
WHERE: *Scape Sky Terrace Level 4.
ENTRY FEE: $40. Participants get a goodie bag with $200 worth of products, including an exclusive OBW Under Armour T-Shirt and vouchers.
REGISTRATION: Begins at 9.30am and closes at 10.15am. To sign up as a sponsor, visit www.operationbrokenwing.com


This article was first published on September 18, 2015.
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