As a new boxer, Deren Hasip has frequently found his training for his upcoming bout for the charity Fight to End Cancer demanding. “It’s physically gruelling,” he says. “The first time I trained, my coach told me, ‘Just survive the next 60 minutes.’”
But the cause is enough to motivate the Toronto-based mortgage agent, who has seen cancer affect his father, his cousin and his daughter – who, while hospital-bound, befriended another sick little girl. The two families became so close that Hasip eventually became the child’s godfather … and then a pallbearer at her funeral when she passed away at the age of nine. Informed by that experience, Hasip is directing the funds he’s raising for the bout to cancers that strike adolescents and young adults.
As for his day-to-day training, Hasip has found it satisfying, despite its exhausting nature. “I like to challenge myself,” he says. “I’m a glutton for punishment, and this makes me push myself. I want to inspire my kids.”