Between the ages of 18 and 38, Mike was pretty much permanently incarcerated. After serving time for a string of offences, Michael’s nadir came when he was convicted of orchestrating the Bristol prison riots as an inmate.
“My life was a catalogue of bad decisions – and every time I made bad one, I’d react with ten more bad choices. Eventually, I reached the point when I just had to change and stay out of prison. The key moment for me, absolutely, was the point where I genuinely took responsibility for myself and my actions.”
Whilst still inside, Mike had begun work with the Second Chance Foundation, retraining as a fitness instructor. School of Hard Knocks continued this process of transformation, as rugby became a positive outlet for energy and aggression.
After impressing the coaches with his leadership, his powerful speaking and his ability to take teammates under his wing, Mike was made captain of his squad. He led the side with aplomb and has been in regular work ever since, as a motivational speaker, a parole officer and, most importantly, in his dream role as a fitness instructor. He is now working in a development role with the Dallaglio Foundation.
We use sport to tackle the issues surrounding unemployment, crime and health. We work with individuals to help them take reponsibility and take positive steps forward in their lives.