Brooklyn Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Works with Save the Children to Help Nepal Earthquake Recovery

Industry: Martial Arts

Brooklyn Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, a martial arts school in Brooklyn dedicated to the development of collaborative training, took on an international challenge in May.

Brooklyn, NY (PRUnderground) June 2nd, 2015

After a 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck Nepal on the morning of April 25, causing severe damage and loss of life across the small nation, the local network of martial arts schools in Brooklyn made a decision to donate as much aid as possible, as quickly as possible.

“We said to ourselves, ‘There are people who are in crisis on the other side of the world, so we can either sit back and say there’s nothing we can do, or we can use this as a way to give something more, to more fully realize our mission,” says James Noto, head instructor at Bay Parkway.

The Brooklyn Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu organization has dedicated itself to maintaining a collaborative environment, with an emphasis on a healthier, saner community for adults and children it serves.

Brooklyn BJJ chose to collect donations all across Brooklyn on behalf of Save the Children, which had a team of 400 already active in the region. Save the Children also provided urgent needs such as food, clean water and shelter, as well as support for assessment and search and rescue teams in the initial phase of the disaster.

Noto says, “we knew that our students would be looking for a way to donate something, somehow to aid in the disaster. It was our great pleasure to be able to coordinate our community to serve not just locally, but globally for people in need.”

After another powerful earthquake struck Nepal on Tuesday, May 12, the school’s commitment to giving intensified.

“Hope is very important in times like these, and part of what the martial arts teaches is to seek hope even in the most dire circumstances,” says instructor Jason Lynch.

According to recent reports, at least 48 people have died and more than 1,200 have been injured. Aftershocks continue, including one with a magnitude of 6.3. Neighboring countries such as India and Bangladesh have experienced major tremors.

“Martial arts in Brooklyn may seem a world removed from Nepal, but part of what we teach our students is that there can be no isolation or exclusion if we really want to practice fully,” notes Chief Instructor Gene Dunn.

“The humanitarian support [for Nepal] from an organization like Save the Children is just awe-inspiring,” Dunn continues. “We didn’t want to allow that inspiration to disappear just because the crisis is not on Myrtle Avenue or 13th Avenue. We might not be able to deliver emergency food, water or shelter directly to the people of Nepal, but we can participate in this stage of the recovery process in the spirit of humanity and service.”

About Brooklyn Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Brooklyn Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu believes that the martial arts are about physical fitness, mental discipline and ethical living. We teach that the martial arts have the power to make profound, positive improvements in the lives of those who practice them.

Our mission is to empower individuals to act as agents of transformation both on the mat and in the world. We believe that the timeless principles of black belt – compassion, generosity, discipline, integrity and involvement – can transform our students, their families and their communities for the better.

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Leah Milius

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