This website is no longer actively maintained
Some material and features may be unavailable

Boxing out negativity

The West Side of Chicago has long suffered from chronic poverty and a lack of opportunity for young people that has resulted in epidemic levels of violence. In the Lawndale neighborhood, former gang member Derek Brown offers guidance and support to the neighborhood’s children. Brown teaches the boys in the neighborhood how to box — and through boxing, gives them an outlet for their aggression, leadership skills and positive mentoring.

The August 13th episode of Need to Know features an in-depth segment on violent crime in Chicago.



  • amy gutowski

    Love this. It made me cry. SERIOUSLY Derek Brown (the guy featured in this clip, is a HERO). Why can’t ‘Race to the Top’ fund programs like this? THEY WORK. We NEED positive male role models in our schools. The percentage of unemployed young Black males in our inner cities is close to 50%. Let’s take this program, train young men to teach boxing lessons in our schools, and make it national, using Derek Brown’s club as a model. It makes perfect sense, oh, but wait, curriculum companies and test making factories won’t profit from this. You can’t standardized test it. my bad. Let’s just continue to siphon tax-payer dollars away from public schools and people, and instead hand the money over to publishing conglomerates and private charter schools housed in former ‘pizza hut’ buildings run by “CEOs”. cool. that makes sense.

  • c.shannon

    Why not also show the principal’s support by including her/him in the video for a fund raiser or a grant for the city of Chicago so it would be more expansive.

  • Carlos

    Boxing is one of the most discipline sport. It teaches kids how to control themselves and avoid the trouble. I don’t know why people in society don’t respect the sport and believe that it is violent. It help kids stay off the street and find something to do especially in the inner city. They should have more boxing programs in public schools.