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UFC Holds ‘Community Works’ Event in Toronto for Youth and Reveal Plans to Implement Anti-Bullying Program in Canada

(Video courtesy of YouTube/ BlahBlahBlah2145)

While in attendance at the UFC press conference in which the promotion announced announced that it would be making it’s long-awaited debut in Ontario last year, I asked the company’s newly-appointed Canadian director of operations, Tom Wright, whether or not there were plans to implement any community-based programs such as in-school anti-bullying initiatives. Although it was early in his tenure, Wright told me that it was definitely something that they would be looking at and that programs such as these were some of the most rewarding he experienced as the head of the Canadian Football League Commissioner.

It’s been 19 months since Wright was hired and Zuffa announced this week that it’s planning on working with local schools in the Greater Toronto Area, where it’s Canadian branch is located, to implement a mentoring program for youth who have experienced bullying. Though it’s too early to tell, there are indications that a regular stream of fighters could speak to Toronto kids about their own experiences with bullying as youth, teachers and parents and if all goes well, it could become a implemented in schools across the country.

Ahead of this weekend’s UFC 140 event in the city, the UFC, in conjunction with the Toronto Police Services held a special event today at Saturday’s venue featuring some local fighters like Mark Hominick, Sean Pierson and Sam Stout and American fighters like bantamweight champion, Dominick Cruz and ex-NFL player-turned UFC heavyweight Matt Mitrione.

During the two-hour event, which wrapped up minutes ago, students listened to short speeches by the fighters about their own trials and tribulations with bullying growing up and were given an opportunity during a Q&A period to ask the fighters questions.

Critics of the sport have been vocal of their opposition to having fighters who punch, kick and choke their opponents for a living into the schools to tell kids to not do what they do outside of competition. Ironically, the same critics have been mostly silent about local boxing legend George Chuvalo and former Toronto Argonaut Mike “Pinball” Clemons visiting schools dozens of times every year.

Toronto City Councillor Doug Ford, whose brother Rob is the city’s mayor, told reporters over the weekend that he supported the initiative and that he hoped the city would embrace the program that will help at-risk youth, but his comments were met with a furor by his fellow municipal politicians who don’t agree with the partnership with schools in the city, even if bullying is a real epidemic there.

The question is, does fighting for a living actually make a person less credible when it comes to talking to kids about bullying?

Leave your thoughts in the comment section.

Cagepotato Comments

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SnackDaddy- December 7, 2011 at 7:51 am
I thought this was a Justin Bieber music video. Damn it!
Lesnars_tiny_pecker_says- December 7, 2011 at 2:33 am
TOO much dumbshit involved. Let kids be kids and fight as they will. Our bus driver used to put us off the bus to fight and then takes us on home. Bullies? we started becoming freinds and I realized they just had issues like I did and need a little wake up call. I just wish I hadn't used my nose as a fist stop. ( broken 4 times in school and that was getting the better of most of the fights) I hate confrontations but I know it is a fact of life. like the guy above me said, the weak get stomped unless someone helps them help themselves.teach them to fight and stop and go on about there day. no stomping just a scrap.
Lesnars_tiny_pecker_says- December 7, 2011 at 2:29 am
We keep teaching kids to tell the teacher and shit. I am getting old because my old man set some basic rules when my brothers and I were growing up. Stand up for yourself, don't let someone put there hands on you if you don't want them too and fight like hell if ya gotta. You won't win them all, but most of the time, they stop cause you aren't an easy target. it all sounds cliche but it has worked for this short, pudgy (but ruggedly handsome) white boy.I aint saying go on a baseball bat spree, just a nice shot to the nose and go on about your day. DONE SON
Todd M- December 6, 2011 at 9:59 pm
^ ROFL, I agree XENO Darwinism, Dominant Species, Survival of the Fittest, call it what you want but this kid needs some steak and squats, stat!
XENOPHON- December 6, 2011 at 9:54 pm
Hey Danga,
Irony - I don't know. Gave it some thought, fuck that kid.
And fuck his parents for letting their fucked up son make a mockery of himself.
I hope that chick he's kicking it with turns eventually to bumping fuzz, and lets that pansy make more pathetic attention seeking videos.
That way CP can post them again as updates.
Instead of fucking with all you...I can bash the kid online at Youtube -
- maybe even get him to cry again. GRIN
When there are 7 billion of any organism, the weak get stomped on. They are not needed.
And yes, human life is cheap. If you decided to pick on a poor, defenseless, and confused kid - I will pay for and ship you a free CP "T" shirt.
Todd M- December 6, 2011 at 8:56 pm
This kid comes across a queer as a 3 dollar bill. GOLD
ZombieRock- December 6, 2011 at 7:28 pm
You can't sharpen a sword on a pillow or build strength without resistance. How is this kid going to develop mental or physical fortitude without obstruction. We're raising a nation of weak people. Oh and and the video was fake, Lady Gaga's people probably paid him to promote her new anti-bullying campaign that's going to snooker a bunch of okey-dokes out of their money.
DangadaDang- December 6, 2011 at 7:00 pm
Xeno if irony was ice cream you'd be able to open your own Baskin Robbins with that post.
throwdown- December 6, 2011 at 6:49 pm
He always says hes been bullied for ever and you think just cause he posted that hes now the most popular guy? I dont think so.......... He made the video for attention , but he is still right about what he says , bullying is everywhere and many kids have ended their lives because they could not handle it. Just the second video he made makes me want to do mean things to him.
XENOPHON- December 6, 2011 at 4:29 pm
Since I watched the emotional and the rebound videos, this whole cause must be worthy. Is there an alternative motive?
This kid comes across a queer as a 3 dollar bill. Absent his Grevious Bodily Harm (GBH) he seem to suffer from week ego and low esteem. Is this the problem with all those that get bullied, no idea.
Instead of fighting, which results in more pain that reinforces psychological weakness, maybe these type of kids need other outlets - one idea is the chess club, or even the video production we had cast upon us. Sound silly?
Think not, seeing one's self as a loser, or a winner is all mental. In this case, flaunting ones weakness seems like a public display of seeking attention...even the means this kid used to cry out for help is reinforcing.
In the future can the staff of CP do us all a big fucking favor, and send these types of articles to the ACLU. Their offices are next door and behind the Cage Potato Corporate offices.
waterboy- December 6, 2011 at 4:02 pm
@throwdown. That 2nd video makes me want to beat him up out by the bikeracks.
Bards- December 6, 2011 at 3:18 pm
Dominick Cruz wasn't there. Mayor Rob Ford's video got booed. His brother Doug just sounds so goofy that it's impossible to boo him even if you don't like him. Mitrione stole the show with his speech.
.BOOM.- December 6, 2011 at 3:14 pm
"it is criminal to teach a man not to defend himself when he is the constant victim of brutal attacks" Malcolm X
skeletor- December 6, 2011 at 2:36 pm
I don't see why it would matter. Aside from maybe Wand none of these guys came out of the wimb as a mixed martial artist. It seems reasonable that they were once bullied and then found a healthy productive way to gain self confidence and stop the bullying. Actually seems like they may be pretty well suited for this kind of work.
martydozer- December 6, 2011 at 2:34 pm
@throwdown actualy just checked it up. means he's doing better now. hence the update on the video itself.

fair play to him!
SonOfSerbia- December 6, 2011 at 2:34 pm
back in the 90's they used to have a big brother program where little whiny mama's boys like the kid in the video could get adult guidance from another adult male. A lot of kids these days are missing older brother and father figures in their lives due to fractured families. Someone needs to pimp slap this weakling into a martial arts gym where he can have his confidence built. This whole anti-bullying campaign is bullshit, kids will always pick on each other its just a fact of life. Its the parents job to endow the kid with the confidence so he doesn't kill himself like this hapless twat. You can take that shit to the bank
martydozer- December 6, 2011 at 2:30 pm
@throwdown i feel cheated....... he bullied my emotions! lol
kellyman- December 6, 2011 at 1:59 pm
Doug Ford opening his mouth in support just means every moderate-to-left-wing person in Canada will oppose it. "Doug Ford wants Ultimate Fighting in schools" is what people are saying. Sucks, but it's true.
Mike Russell- December 6, 2011 at 1:32 pm
@throwdown. He says he has friends now because of the video, which was filmed four months ago.
throwdown- December 6, 2011 at 1:12 pm
Its a good message but he lied
martydozer- December 6, 2011 at 12:45 pm
i seen this the other day and thought that i needed to fly over and show the bully's what for!
Fried Taco- December 6, 2011 at 12:41 pm
I teach my kids to beat the crap out of anyone that tries to bully them, and I deal with the school administration later. I'm sure I could take the principal, he's an old fart.
KingTcb- December 6, 2011 at 12:36 pm
I think I need to find out who this guy is so I can personally escort him thru school.