Karate program promotes community service

Special to the NEWS

Mia Escamilla recently spent a Saturday morning at South Padre Island for more than just fun in the sun.
The 12-year-old brown belt joined her martial arts team from Metamorphix Martial Arts in Harlingen for an Earth Day Adopt-a-Beach cleanup.

“This was my way, our way, to help our community by keeping our beaches clean,” she said. “Being able to serve our community, while helping our environment is a good feeling.”

As an aspiring martial artist, her goal is to make this world a better place and she said her instructor and owner of Metamorphix Martial Arts, Anastacia Ortiz, a San Benito native, is instilling these values in all her students.

“Not only does our instructor (Ortiz) teach us martial arts and trains us to improve our techniques and forms, but she helps us all around,” said Escamilla. “She loves helping others and taking care of our environment and she is teaching us that being a black belt is more than just a color, it’s about being good people and making a difference in our community.”

Ortiz, who has been training for nearly a decade, said she combines a variety of teachings into her martial arts curriculum, and serving the community is only one aspect of each students’ training.

“This was a memorable experience for all of us in a sense that we did it together; we came together for a cause bigger than us,” said Ortiz. “Through our fellowship we learned new things about each other and our region. I was also able to include mentorship conversations with my students and come together with their families, who were also in attendance.”

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