The Kingston University Capoeira club has been informed that its funding will be discontinued for the rest of the academic year by the Student Union.
The club, which has been ran at the University for 11 years, has been told that due to pressures on the union’s budget, they are unable to justify continued funding for the rest of the semester.
Club president, Canon Kingstan Manuel, says that it is disappointing that the club’s funding has been cut, due to the effort put into recruitment by club members.
He said: “We were given a warning, if we didn’t recruit up to 10 people, the club may be shut down. Due to the warning, we put all our efforts into bring 10 people to try our classes. Out of those 10 people, seven became members of our club.
We felt our efforts went to waste and they didn’t acknowledge it.”
Head coach Marcus Cabeça is also extremely disappointed with the decision, after a lot of hard work over the last few weeks.
He said: “The university gives money to pay for the coaches, gives money to pay for the venue, so the club were aware of what they had to do.
“As soon as we were informed, we contacted The River, we boosted posts on social media, they all went through all the networks to encourage people to join, and people joined. The people were enjoying the classes as well, it was good for them.”
Cabeça went on to mention how the period during the coronavirus pandemic has been incredibly difficult for everyone, including the club.
He said: “Everybody knows somebody who has been affected by the pandemic, and it has effected everybody’s mental health.”
After the decision from the union was broken to the club, several club members sent emails to both sports coordinator, Kieran Dempsey and Vice-president of the Student union, Muna Ali, praising the online lessons and how much they had enjoyed the sessions in which they had taken part in.
This included club members praising the work of coach Cabeça, as well as the good atmosphere they experienced as part of the club.
The Student Union released a statement in regards to the cutting of funding of union sports clubs.
It said: ”We monitor our online club session attendance through our website (where we ask all clubs to create events for students to sign up to) and reached out to clubs that have low numbers. We continue to monitor sessions and unfortunately in some cases we must remove funding where sessions aren’t attracting regular student numbers.
The pandemic has affected every aspect of the union, which means that some staff are placed on furlough. We always try to speak to our students over Zoom or Microsoft Teams but this isn’t always possible when staff are on reduced hours, which is explained to any students who may be affected by the reduction.”