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Fencing Founder Forges Ahead

06/01/2010, 11:16am CDT
By No Author

On April 30, 2010, En Garde! Detroit and the NAACP hosted a youth symposium in Detroit, Michigan as part of the NAACP Freedom Weekend. They were able to engage over 400 inner city youth with the support of Leon Paul and the U.S. Fencing Association.

“The students were exposed to Fencing as a means of encouraging them to learn other sports outside of basketball and football,” said Head Coach and Founder, Bobby Smith, “Especially if they are seeking athletic scholarships to college.”
This speaker session was also used to dispel the myths surrounding college scholarships and encourage students to strive for higher grades first and athletics second. By encouraging these students to use sports to enhance their 'life resumes,' they walked away with a better chance at a successful life.

“This is how we use fencing out here,” said Bobby Smith,  “We are active in helping the city of Detroit try bounce back. When the city is in a state of denigration, the children suffer the most.”

En Garde! Detroit has begun its mini-capital campaign to build a fencing club in the Detroit area that is open to the public. However, their primary goal is to make fencing a possibility for at-risk youth. Using fencing as a youth development tool, they plan to combat Detroit’s 60% high school dropout rates.

“We are currently working with community partners and corporations in hopes of defraying cost associated with competitive fencing for at risk youth of any shape, size, creed, or religion,” said Smith, “Hopefully, we encouraged some to trade in their hoop-dreams for… Sword Dreams.”™

Bobby Smith invites all to visit their website  - - and take a look at the work they have done so far. He also says he cannot wait for us to see what they are planning for the Detroit North American Cup in March. It promises to be a game changer!

Tag(s): News