As the story has it, one day I headed to the opposite side of the globe – the Flipside. I arrived in Korea February 16th, 2005 and thought I’d do a year, then leave. I was wrong. I stayed, launched my first company, Flipside Fitness, and then opened Korea's largest boxing club, Hulk's Boxing (now called Hulk's Club).

After 11.5yrs in Korea, I then picked up one day and returned to Toronto, Canada. But then I left again.

Now I live in the Philippines where I am the CEO and head coach of Empowered Clubhouse, the Philippines' first and only boxing clubhouse exclusively just for women. I also am the founder of the Lil' Sistas Project, CEO and designer of Slay Gear and Baa Baa Black Sheep .Ph.

Monday, November 19, 2018

A Grateful Heart... Monday, November 19

It's the first day of the new week, of a week that's going to be pretty big and pretty important to me.  I have a lot going on, always do and always seem to be working at full speed and nonstop, but some major key things that are happening this week.

Tuesday --  Start full contact rugby training in Pasig
Wednesday -- Guest Speaker at Impact Hub's F-Up Manila
Thursday -- Business meeting with potential new clothing line production crew
Saturday -- Lil' Pow Boxing Class launch day at The Center of Hope

The thing I'm most looking forward to is the launch of the Lil' Pow Boxing Class at The Center of Hope.  I've extended the Lil' Sista Project to include them out in Antipolo and this Saturday I'm hosting my first boxing class for them.  I'll be coaching 50 beautiful little girls in boxing and I anticipate it to be awesome and fabulous.  One of my personal training clients actually approached me about getting her daughter involved and so I'll be travelling to Antipolo with her where she'll act as my assistant and help with crowd control and translating.  I don't know if I'm more excited for myself or for her because she's only 14 and this could very well be as life changing for her as it was for me, possible even more so actually because she's the same age of the girls participating.  Those participating at The Center of Hope are human sex trafficking survivors so their situations are quite heartbreaking and intense, but I found it so incredibly inspiring to meet them and see how they're healing.  It's one thing to go through the traumatic situations that they have but to pick up from that low point, grow and really become stronger, it's so admirable.  They are the poster children for resilience.  I hope my little assistance sees this and finds such amazing motivation in it because I know I have and I know I'll continue to do so.  

Today, while I was boxing, The Center of Hope messaged me.  There is a Norewegen media crew coming on December 1st to cover The Center of Hope and they want Empowered to be a part of it.  Honestly, I can't say how blessed I am to be a part of what they're doing.  They're changing lives.  So this weekend I'll be hosting my Lil' Pow Class at the facility and then on December 1st I'll be returning to do another and for filming.  The plan is to go there once a month but if they were closer, I swear, I'd be there every week.  

In Toronto I have a friend that runs a nonprofit boxing club for kids under the age of 18.  It is funded by the local government but I know it's also supported by various businesses and organizations within the community because it's a lot to run plus she and her husband also have bills to pay outside of it, like their home rent and whatnot.  Volunteer work is great, you feel awesome doing it, but it doesn't pay the bills.  I realized just recently that her husband is a postal worker.  Proof in point that you can't just simply run a nonprofit boxing club without an additional source of income to sustain yourself with.  I'd love to solely just run the Lil' Sista Project, honestly, but it's next to impossible.  I don't live in Canada where there are additional organizations or even government funding that would help it.  That's why I've paired up with The Center of Hope and Holy Family Home.  I honestly don't know how they make ends meet plus pay their staff or if it's just solely based on a volunteer system.  Regardless, I have nothing but respect for what they're doing because it's not easy, especially here in the Philippines.  

And that's where I don't think Canadians realize just how blessed they have it.  

In Canada there is free education, healthcare, welfare, disability benefits, senior citizen benefits, retirement plans, government funding and grants,... aaaaaand I'll just stop there.  You got my point. 

But this isn't Canada, this is the Philippines and things are so different here.  Issues are on a whole other level, like poverty.  I feel like people here are more grateful though for what they have.  They have less, many of them, but many have a lot more than others, but they're happy.  

I hope I never take for granted all that I have and I hope I give back all that I can.

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