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In a world where the allure of drugs can cast a dark shadow over young lives, we came together for a special cause. Over a recent weekend, two heartwarming events unfolded – one in San Diego, CA, and the other in Tijuana, Mex. These gatherings went beyond the boxing ring; they were a celebration of life, a testament to the power of discipline, and a bold stand against the dangers of drugs.

Fighting the Battle Beyond the Ring

The events took place in humble boxing gyms, serving children from underprivileged backgrounds in remote areas. At the core of these gatherings were two vital programs: ‘Espíritu de Campeón’ by Cleto Reyes and TV Azteca’s ‘Vive sin drogas’ campaign. Both programs embrace the values that mold a true champion: family, a healthy body and mind, commitment, and discipline. They understand the fragility of these values in the face of destructive habits, like drug use.

San Diego’s ‘Espíritu de Campeón’ Event
(August 31st, 2023)

On a warm August evening, the North County Boxing Gym in San Marcos, CA, played host to an event that would impact lives profoundly.

The evening began with a heartfelt talk by Rocky Herron, a former DEA agent, who passionately discussed the perils of drugs. Elizabeth Reyes (Cleto Reyes, and member of the WBC Cares family), and her husband Guillermo Moreno (Cleto Reyes USA) followed with insightful conversations about life choices, the protective embrace of boxing, and the commitment to fighting against drug-related issues. The atmosphere was filled with dedication and joy.

Elizabeth Reyes (WBC Cares collaborator), and members of Cleto Reyes posing with one of the attendees at the 'Espíritu de Campeón', holding a WBC champion belt replica

Also, five-time world champion Manuel ‘Mantecas’ Medina took the center stage at the gym. He demonstrated boxing training techniques and graced the gym with his mitt work, all the while imparting the wisdom and discipline that boxing fosters.

As a fitting finale, the gym’s talented students showcased their skills through exhibition fights and demonstrations, their mentors Eduardo Hernandez and his son guiding them towards brighter futures, both in the ring and in their studies.

Manuel 'Mantecas' Medina doing some mitt work on the ring with one of the attendees at the event 'Espiritu de Campeón' in San Marcos, CA

Tijuana’s ‘Espíritu de Campeón’ Event
(September 2nd, 2023)

Just a day later, in Tijuana, Mexico, a similar event took place at Sick Vic & Meño’s gym, radiating the same message of hope and empowerment. Students, boxing enthusiasts, and their families congregated at the gym.

This time, along with Rocky Herron’s talk, the event also featured talks by TV Azteca’s sports presenters who echoed the significance of discipline, dreams, and staying clear of drugs.

The day saw even more exhibition fights and demonstrations, with Victor ‘Sick Vic’ and his crew leading the boxing instruction. And again, five-time world champion Manuel ‘Mantecas’ Medina shared his knowledge, experience and passion for boxing with the attendees.

Attendees at the 'Espíritu de Campeón', posing on the ring for the camera

The rhythm of the event mirrored the beats of young hearts, each beat filled with aspiration and the determination to become champions, not only in the boxing ring but in life.

A Gift of Hope and Inspiration

Both events carried a special touch of giving. The gyms received a donation of boxing equipment by Cleto Reyes, reinforcing their efforts to empower young minds through boxing. In the spirit of goodwill, WBC Cares presented commemorative t-shirts to mark these remarkable occasions.

The ‘Espíritu de Campeón’ events were more than just boxing gatherings; they were a testament to the transformative power of sport, discipline, and hope. They celebrated life, inspired dreams, and reinforced the belief that with dedication, dreams can be realized, and futures can be forged.

In these two special events, we witnessed the power of unity, hope, and determination. We’ve sown the seeds of inspiration into the hearts of these young champions, helping them realize that they can conquer the world with their fists of courage and determination.

Through the ‘Espíritu de Campeón’ program, the ‘Vive sin drogas’ campaign, and the WBC Cares support we emphasize the importance of nurturing the values that build champions and ensuring that, together, a world can be created where no child’s dreams are overshadowed by the darkness of drugs.

The commitment to this cause is unwavering, and we eagerly anticipate watching these young talents rise as champions both in the ring and in life.

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