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He might not be a professional boxer, but he loves the sport. He believes boxing can teach you many life lessons and he wants to share some of the wisdom he learned through this sport with younger generations. That’s why he, along with three others, co-founded La Raza Marshalltown Boxing Club, a place where a person of any race, gender and age is welcome to join and learn to box.  

Roberto Gonzalez, President and co-founder of La Raza Marshalltown Boxing Club, was born in Mexico, but raised in a rough neighborhood in Houston, TX. When he was young, he used to box in the backyard with his brothers. He did not become a boxer, but he never lost his passion for the sport. 10 years ago, he left Texas and came to Marshalltown, Iowa. He learned that years ago Marshalltown had a boxing club and it was relatively popular in the community. But that boxing club closed its doors. Mr. Gonzalez knew he wanted to bring the boxing club back to the community. He always believed that a boxing club can be more than just boxing, but a place where young people can learn about life lessons. About a month ago La Raza Marshalltown Boxing Club opened its doors.  

“I believe boxing is like life. Life has its ups and downs and in boxing you get hit hard and you have to get up, “Mr. Gonzalez explained why he is passionate about this sport.  

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Currently, this boxing club has about 23 members. It is open to children ages 8 years old to 17 years old and adults of any age. Mr. Gonzalez wants this boxing club to be a place that welcomes people of any race or gender.  

“No matter gender you can still do this sport,” Mr. Gonzalez said inviting girls to come check boxing out.  

He said that in the group of 23 kids they have a mix of girls and boys learning to box. Mr. Gonzalez thinks that girls should consider boxing too because not only it will teach them to defend themselves, but also it will empower them to achieve better things in life.  

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La Raza Boxing Club has 4 coaches. Mr. Gonzalez is one of them. They are certified and follow the USA Boxing protocol. One of the coaches used to be an amateur boxer who won the Golden Gloves. The Boxing club is open every day. The kids train from 5 PM to 6 PM and adults come in from 6 PM to 7 PM. The cost is $50 a month for kids and $60 for adults. In the future they plan to offer financial help to children from lower income families.  

“Our mission is to use boxing as a tool [to build up] confidence, to go to college” Mr. Gonzalez explained why he wants to bring more youngsters to the boxing club. “Boxing gives discipline to achieve bigger things. We want to involve more kids to maintain them away from bad things.”  

Mr. Gonzalez has big plans for the future of La Raza Marshalltown Boxing Club. Besides offering some kind of financial assistance to bring in more kids, there are plans to go to boxing tournaments and if kids feel like they are ready they will be participating. They want to bring some boxing events to Marshalltown as well. Mr. Gonzalez hopes the club can grow bigger and do more things for the community.  

“We want to include everyone,” Mr. Gonzalez stated. “[We want] to have a diverse organization to resemble our town. Unite through boxing.”  

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If you wish to join La Raza Marshalltown Boxing Club or would like more information about it, please, call or text to Roberto Gonzalez to (641) 328-4127. You can also find them on Facebook. La Raza Marshalltown Boxing Club is a non-profit organization and they are looking for sponsors to help them expand and outreach to more people in the community. This club is open to adults and children 8 years old and up.  

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