Vt. man on mission to create a new youth empowerment center

Published: Feb. 27, 2022 at 9:37 AM EST
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WINOOSKI, Vt. (WCAX) - For more than a decade, King McMillan has been brainstorming a new program designed to empower and uplift kids. After securing a space in Winooski, McMillan is now ready to make his dream a reality.

McMillan has a vision to turn the former Winooski Press office, which is now vacant, into the Fight For Kids Foundation. McMillan says the organization is designed to teach kids safe and effective ways to communicate and make them stronger physically, mentally and emotionally.

“We want to help them recognize what truth is so that they can start to live their own personal truth,” said McMillan. “Everything is mental so it’s about perspective and being prepared mentally and how to prepare them mentally for situations that present themselves, whether it’s a physical thing, or how to be tough and stand up to peer pressure, bullying. How to be emotionally tougher.”

McMillan says they’ll be teaching kids meditation, nutrition and martial arts.

McMillan, who is a boxer and the owner of King James Boxing in Winooski, says since he took up the sport years ago, he’s noticed significant changes in his life. And he hopes boxing will have the same impact on the students at the Fight For Kids Foundation.

“I’ve gotten into less fights. The more I learn how to fight, the less I was in altercations in the street,” McMillan said. “And I’ve seen the same thing happen with kids. Getting better grades in school because their confidence level is up. It’s just doing a lot for a lot of people.”

McMillian says the ultimate goal is to create a safe environment that helps young people develop strong interpersonal skills and a sense of purpose and inner peace.

“They’re chasing all of these things -- body image or the cars and the clothes -- but then they get it and they’re like, ‘Why am I not happy?’ So we want to teach them ‘Take care of this first,’” McMillan said while pointing to his chest.

McMillan says construction is set to start this summer and he’s hoping to have the Fight For Kids Foundation up and running by 2023. He’s currently looking for donors to help fund the project. To donate, click here.

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