Rhys is in his 5th year at school, studying for his prelims ahead of his big exams later in the year! Rhys helps out at his local boxing club, Greenock Boxing Club, as well as competing in boxing himself!
Which young Scot inspires you?
Willy Hutchison and Josh Taylor both inspire me. Josh Taylor was involved in Commonwealth and Olympic games, winning the Commonwealth Games gold in 2014, before turning professional. Willy Hutchison is the first Scot to ever win amateur world boxing title in 2016. An incredible achievement and a Scottish first. Willie is also now a professional boxer.
What is the best thing about growing up in Scotland?
The best thing for me is education and health care. I have had great difficulty learning but with extra help and support I have achieved more than I thought I would. Simply learning reading and writing has been a weight off my mind. I am unwell quite a lot but the health care professionals have always taken great care of me since I was born. I am grateful.
What would you most like people from older generations to know about young people?
Young people are not all the same. We should not be pre-judged. Many of us have good manners and are respectful. It is important that we have a mutual respect. I hope 2018 will be the year that highlights young people can and will make Scotland an even better place to live.
What is your biggest achievement to date?
I am really proud to be a multiple National boxing Champion. Proud because I have disabilities which I have overcome. I am also very proud to be a member of Young Scot and Sport Scotland’s youth panel; a huge honour. Being an Ambassador for Year of Young people is another huge honour. My achievements would not be possible without the help of others and I appreciate them all.
What would you most like to achieve in the future?
My biggest aspiration is to one day have a full time job. I want to enter the workplace and despite facing some challenges prove that I can add value to a company/organisation. I would like to contribute financially to my family to help them as they have helped me since I was born and continue to do so. Who knows, one day i may well just repay them a bit!
What message would you like to give to other young people in Scotland?
Always believe in yourself, even if you think no-one else believes in you. Smile, be happy and do not worry too much. Every day provides an opportunity to help others and to show respect. Think about others and try and leave a good impression. Be thankful and stay humble.
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