Submit Harvey auction aims to raise $15,000
With a series of fundraising events, Fight to Win Promotions and the Brazilian jiu-jitsu community have raised more than $15,000 in just a couple of weeks for those affected by Hurricane Harvey. After taking to the mats in professional submission grappling matches and world-class instructor seminars, organizers expect to double those initial funds with the “Submit Harvey” online auction this week. Auction items include professional services, autographed and collector items, and more than 100 blackbelts have donated their time and talents to the cause.
“The response has been overwhelming,” said Seth Daniels, CEO of Fight to Win Promotions. “I grew up in Katy, Texas and I felt helpless watching the devastation, so I talked to my wife, called a couple of my friends and business partners, and within nine days we had exceeded our initial goal of $10,000 with just online fundraising.” After that initial push, organizers say it was everyone in the jiu-jitsu community who has carried the momentum from there.
“People are reaching out asking how they can help if they couldn’t come to the events,” said Mike Calimbas, Fight to Win Partner and professional photographer. “The online auction allows us to reach the global jiu-jitsu community and we found that everyone just wants to know two things: how they can help, and that the funds will actually reach those who needed it most.”
The “Submit Harvey” online auction site is live this week, and has hundreds of items including everything from unique and rare knives to private lessons with the most recognized competitors and world-class instructors in the sport. One of the top bids is for a one-hour private lesson with the legendary Renzo Gracie, a 6th degree blackbelt and a pioneer in the sport of Brazilian jiu-jitsu.
In addition to the online fundraising and auction, all profits from the recent Fight to Win events, F2W Pro 46 in San Antonio, the Texas Open tournament, and the F2W Pro 47 in Houston contributed to the fund. Many fighters who typically earn a winner’s purse and commission on ticket sales gave their money back as donations.
In Sugar Land, Brian Carequinha Marvin’s Gracie Barra academy raised $4500 with instructors flying in from Minnesota, and even Florida to help with the cause. “To have Master Renato Tavares fly in from Florida, where they are also rebuilding after Hurricane Irma, shows how much everyone has rallied around the cause,” explains Marvin. “Our fundraising seminars and private lessons are just our way of showing the strength of our community, that we’re in this together, we’re still fighting, we’re making a comeback, and it’s our way of helping the communities in Texas and in Florida heal and rebuild.”
Organizers pledge that “Submit Harvey” funds will continue to be distributed to those in need in Florida as well as Texas, with a mission to donate 100% of the proceeds directly to victims of the hurricanes. They will focus on those who were most severely impacted, including those with no insurance or those who have suffered multiple total loss flooding tragedies.
The live auction site is: https://www.charityauctionstoday.com/auctions/submitharvey-2988 and will run through the weekend.