Vertical Skillz Outreach teaches powerful life skills through boxing

OAKLAND, Calif. -- After hitting rock bottom, there is only one way to go and that's up. One nonprofit organization in Oakland teaches kids boxing techniques to develop the physical and mental life skills needed to go vertical.

Vertical Skillz Outreach is a program that empowers inner city youth in Oakland through health and wellness, training, mentorship, travel, and more.

"I believe that in order to go vertical, you need certain skills to be able to slowly step yourself a little bit higher to reach your goals," said Vertical Skillz Outreach founder Dalia Gomez.

Gomez teaches boxing to help students discover the powerful connection between mind and body. With each program session, kids learn to maintain calmness, sharpen focus, and strengthen self-confidence when facing a challenge.

"You don't have to compete to be a fighter. You're a fighter, I'm a fighter, we're all fighters in life," said Gomez. "This land that we're in is native land, this is fighter's land."

Gomez also incorporates one-on-one mentoring into the training program to support each student's educational growth, sense of self, and long-term goal development.

"I was once them. I know what it's like to want a mentor, want a way out, a place where I could feel safe, or a place where I could feel loved," said Gomez. "And now as an adult, and not a student anymore, I still feel it's my duty to give back."

For more Vertical Skillz Outreach program information, visit here.

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