Liverpool (WSYR-TV) – A young Salina girl is making an impact around the world with a special project she’s spearheading from right here in Central New York.
Valencia Bidwell has been involved with the sport of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for 3 years.
She’s only 8 years old now so it’s been a big part of much of her life and she wants to make sure other kids have the same opportunity she’s had with the sport.
When we first met her last year, Valencia had decided to try and collect 100 gis, the uniform used in the sport, to donate to kids who couldn’t afford them. She’s passed her goal.
Valencia Bidwell tells NewsChannel 9, “I want to help kids around the world experience the joys of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu like I have.”
Sheena Bidwell, Valencia’s mother says, “For your average person to give something as simple as a top and bottom,it’s life changing to these kids.”
“Take kids out of really negative environments and teach them martial arts, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and gives them things like nutritional counseling, education counseling and it gives them confidence and they believe in themselves” says Valencia’s father Mike Bidwell.
They say you can’t really do Jiu Jitsu without a gi.
It’s a lot more than just a uniform to make you look good, it’s actually built really strong and tough for all the gripping, pulling and grabbing they do while they’re training.
It would be like playing football without any pads.
Later this week Valencia will receive a donation of 100 gis, her original goal, all in one day, from Submission Fight Company. So what’s her new goal?
Valencia says, “I don’t have a limit.”