NEWS – Local coach aiming to help the heroes
Current amateur boxing coach at Brandon Boxing Club, 39-year-old Paddy O’Connor, is proving his club’s ongoing charitable worth with his own, recent gesture aimed at ex-service personnel.
O’Connor took to social media last week to announce that he has; “A two-bedroomed house in Shildon, County Durham which I have decided to offer to ex-armed forces veterans who have sadly found themselves homeless.
“It will be rent free for 12 months hopefully giving them a chance to rebuild their lives.”
Ex-service personnel often find themselves forgotten about and becoming wayward souls once they leave the Armed Forces and O’Connor, supported by his wife Louise and their two children have taken it upon themselves to offer assist in whatever way they can.
The house, which is part of his portfolio of rental properties will be available for a year at a time on a fully furnished basis and is available for suitable persons in the near future.
O’Connor added: “The property has recently become available due to the previous tenancy agreement coming to an end and with all the recent press about members of the armed forces falling on tough times it’s good to be able to give something back.
“We’ve re-trained a good few ex-service personnel at our Teesside centre and seeing those has brought to light as to what’s actually happening. These people do phenomenal jobs in different roles and they do it to keep us safe so, as I’ve been a successful businessman myself, I’d like to give something back.
“We’ll look at this being a continuation, something which is ongoing where we can directly help people and we’ve spoken to a few contacts in military charities so it’s nice that we can get the wheels in motion for a great gesture we’re delighted to be able to put forward.”
Not only is the property available in Shildon but Brandon Boxing Club are also willing to open their doors to those individuals and he encourages any other property business in the area, or even further afield to offer similar gestures if they are able to do.
“This is something that has pretty much been on my mind for a while now,” O’Connor admitted, “And, having spoken in detail to my wife Louise, we are giving this a good go.
“She is supporting the decision fully and thinks that it is an amazing gesture, an excellent idea, and we’ve been overwhelmed with support which have received already.”
If there is any ex-service personnel, or charities who deal with ex-service personnel, interested and have suitable candidates please contact Paddy O’Connor, or his PA Samantha during office hours on 0191 3781011.