PAY IT FORWARD | Making a difference through boxing
BALTIMORE (WBFF) - In West Baltimore, there are few recreational options for kids and young adults, but Uppercut Boxing Gym of Maryland is committed to making a difference.
Thirty hours a week, Antonio Hall works on his form inside Uppercut Boxing Gym on Wabash Avenue.
“It's been nine or 10 months,” he says, “and I've been here every day so I can be better. This is my haven for training.”
It's a haven for the hands and for the soul.
The gym is filled with positive male role models, but it’s the woman who's ringside that’s making it all possible.
Germaine Robinson is the owner of the gym. “My hands, my heart, everything is always open to help anyone who's trying,” she said. “Financially, I let them know as soon as they come in that they don't have to worry about that.”
Robinson is more than just a gym owner to these fighters, Hall says.
“This is my second mother,” he said as he hugs Robinson.
She's opened her doors to create a safe environment for kids who may otherwise have nowhere to go. “Even though it may not be the best community, it's the best community for boxing," she said.
Her nephew, Tavon Sol, has been training at the gym since he was 6 years old.
Now, as a young adult, he sees how valuable the gym is.
“As a community, there's not a lot of rec centers helping these kids,” he said. “Kids need guidance and that's what we’re here to do: mentoring, tutoring.”
Andrena Sawyer nominated Robinson for FOX45’s Pay it Forward.
“This place represents hope,” Sawyer said. “It means a lot to this community. and I don't know if she always gets to hear that,”
Sawyer says the gym is making a big difference.
“I appreciate there's a place where kids can come and not be on the street hanging out. There's something else grooming them to be everything they want to be, and I think that's powerful," she said.
On behalf of FOX45 and the law firm Cohen, Snyder, Eisenberg and Katzenberg, Robinson received $500 to continue her good work.