Interview with Jamaine Facey
Jamaine Facey is an MMA fighter from London who, in his last fight beat his opponent Ross Pointon in 3 minutes and 7 seconds of the very first round. He was competing in the Welterweight Division at Cage Rage 23 and his flying knee followed by some vicious ground and pound finished his opponent, taking his record to 7-6-0. Since his win, Jamaine is sitting back and spending time with his family before deciding who he wants to fight next.
But although taking that important time, Jamaine is still training hard and working. After his fight, Jamaine spoke about his campaign work for ‘Hands Up Guns Down’ so I caught up with Jamaine to find out more about his campaign and what he is aiming to achieve. We all know the horrendous statistics surrounding knife and gun crime in the UK and indeed the rest of the world. So many youngsters and adults alike are losing their lives, be it through organised crime or just being in with the wrong crowd. The gang culture in England is evident on the streets and for some this lifestyle is a choice but for others, they are born into the way of life. It is easy to be led onto the wrong side of the tracks, the lure of easy money and notoriety is a strong factor. But what if there was another way to make a name for yourself and to do it for the right reasons? This is what Jamaine is trying to achieve with his campaign and he starts by telling me a little about his life prior to becoming an awesome MMA fighter.
Jamaine moved from Birmingham to Brixton, London when he was sixteen. He moved away from all his friends and found himself roaming the streets of London for a good few years. Although he always knew right from wrong, he says it would have been so easy for him to take the wrong path in life but feels that would have been an excuse because everyone has a choice and no matter what, he reiterates that we all know what is right and what is wrong and it is our choice to make. He looked at his crowd of friends who weren’t working and ‘signing on’ and realised that it was the easy option so Jamaine went to the Job Centre and asked to sign on. The guy gave him all the forms and told him to take them away and bring them back once he had completed them. On his return, after filling the forms in, the guy at the Job Centre told him that he had done them all wrong and had to start over. Jamaine makes me laugh when he says he literally freaked out, threw the papers on the desk and told the guy he wasn’t going to bother with the forms and would go to college instead! He wasn’t sure what he wanted to do but eventually decided on becoming a mechanic. However, whilst at college and on a placement at a garage, it was then that Jamaine realised the lifestyle wasn’t for him. He didn’t like all the grease, dirt and generally dirty environment.
Getting into MMA was a choice that he took a while to make. He had always been a sporty person, playing football at school etc. but a few of his friends were taking part in MMA and wanted Jamaine to go along to a session. He says he wasn’t interested at all and thought it was highly amusing that his friends were into rolling around on the floor with other guys! But after some cajoling he finally went along to a session at Elite Fighting and saw what it was really all about. He said there were people grappling on the mats and others using the punch bags and he just knew he wanted to do it. Up until that day Jamaine had been out partying and not doing too many productive things but that session literally changed his life and since then he has trained hard and studied the different disciplines.
Nowadays he holds down a full time job as a Leisure Centre Manager and also trains in the evenings at his gym Bandogs MMA. It is here that he is working on his campaign to encourage children and adults to put the guns and knives down and to put up the hands instead. He also wants to show them that taking drugs isn’t the way forward. Jamaine thinks he is suited to what he is doing, because people relate to him and where he has come from and how he so easily could have been just another person on the street. He runs free sessions for young teenagers in the hope they will come in, see what they can achieve and flip right on over from the lifestyle they have become accustomed to. He attends schools and gives talks to kids to encourage them and feels that not enough schools in the UK run any kind of programme incorporating MMA disciplines. He feels they should be pushing kids to do something in a controlled environment instead of letting them out of the gates with pent up aggression which will only lead to trouble. He wants the people he helps to know that there is another way and really gets behind them with the training and competing.
He puts on special events called Sunday Brawl which are held in Crystal Palace, London, where he matches Semi Professional fighters. So far he has held ten shows and they are aired on Wartime TV. The next event is on Sunday November 27th 2011 so get in touch if you want to find out more.
What Jamaine hopes to do is raise £5000 for his campaign so that it can become a recognised, registered charity. But he also helped raise money for the charity Joe’s Journey. This charity has achieved its aim in raising money to send Little Joe who is four to America to have an operation to help improve his quality of life as he was born with Noonan Syndrome but also later diagnosed with Spastic Diplegia Cerebral Palsy. Joe is an extremely bright little boy who has had to suffer through so much pain on a daily basis but today he is on his way to the USA to have his operation. Jamaine wants to wish him and his family the best of luck.
For Hands Up Guns Down, Jamaine will be holding a charity dinner on Saturday October 29th at Fulwoods in Chancery Lane. There will be much more information to follow shortly but this night is going to be a fantastic one with raffles, singers, comedians and an auction. Watch http://www.britfights.com for all the information as it emerges or contact Jamaine directly.
So with his day job, training and charity work, Jamaine is more than just an MMA fighter. He is an ambassador for the sport and loves what he does. One motto Jamaine leaves me with which is so true – ‘you only get out of something, what you put into it’ and I can vouch that the flying knee that took Pointon by surprise on Saturday certainly had a whole lot going into it! If you would like to contact Jamaine about sponsorship or the Sunday Brawl events then feel free to contact him via email firstname.lastname@example.org