Meet the former bomb disposal hero, who’s helping to get Britain’s school kids into shape in 2013

Updated: January 2, 2013

A CRACK team of former commandos and elite ex-army men are to help Britain’s schoolkids to shape up in the New Year.

The former military men are being sent straight to the education frontline to tackle truancy, poor attendance and health inequalities in some of the country’s most deprived areas.

They are part of a Government-funded initiative called Commando Joes, which was founded by former Green Beret Mike Hamilton, age 31, (pictured above).

Commando Joes is the first and only military fitness company of its kind in the country – targeted specifically at children by using tailor-made obstacle courses and team-building games.

Mike told The Cheerful Times: “I think why we engage young people so well is the instructors are all ex-military personnel – they are role models and kids look up to and aspire to be like them.”

Now, after winning the war against health and education equalities in its north west heartland, Mike’s fledgling company has won over half a million pounds of government funding to expand their ethos of ‘No child left behind’ across the UK.

Starting off in some of the toughest schools in Manchester, it’s been no mean feat.  But company founder, Mike, is used to a tough challenge – having served as part of an elite bomb disposal unit on the frontline in Afghanistan and Iraq, considered to be one of the most dangerous jobs on earth.

Now, he’s determined he and his troop of ex-army experts can fight education inequalities back on UK soil.  Combining the team-building and survival skills he learned as a Commando.

Mike added: “When we go to a school playground children hang on every word. In some of the deprived areas we work in, young people have not got grassy areas or anywhere to go. When they come to our sessions they get a chance to socialise in a different way, to be part of a team.

“Our motto is No Child Left Behind – and what that means is we will work with every child and young person to help them feel motivated to learn and be part of their school and community again.”

The schools that Mike has worked with so far are already full of praise. A spokesman for Stanley Grove Primary Academy in Manchester said: “The sessions are loved by pupils and staff alike!”

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