In the summer of 2015, founder, president, CEO, and life-long pro wrestling fan, Matt Harrigan found himself in a particularly rough patch in his life, battling severe depression and suicidal tendencies. Matt found himself looking for ways to help get himself out of the hole that he was stuck in. Matt, as a result, turned to the one thing that he always loved: professional wrestling.
From there, Matt discovered the work of “Crazy” Mary Dobson; a unique female independent wrestler who had ridiculous strength on-par with many male wrestlers, and wrestled a brawling style that hadn’t been seen in most female wrestlers. Mary Dobson’s work was the metaphorical ladder that dropped down into the hole that Matt was stuck in. The individuals that allowed Matt to climb that ladder to get out of that hole were Matt and Nick Jackson, known as The Young Bucks.
The Young Bucks are known for wrestling a flashy style; using a variety of different flips and other techniques but they are most famous for the use of the wrestling move called the superkick, an extended side kick that would put all of their opponents down for the count. The Young Bucks, through their work, showed Matt the beauty and fun of life. They taught him to live life in the fullest, to not care about comments from naysayers, and that life was intended to be fun. It was based upon this premise, along with Matt’s overall philanthropic and ambitious nature, that caused him to create a holiday themed campaign called “Superkick the Holidays”.
The fundraiser, which officially launched the day after Thanksgiving, set a modest goal of $1,000 to raise in order to purchase weather-appropriate Young Bucks-themed clothing from the company called One Hour Tees—a website for wrestlers to sell their own merchandise and get a large majority of the cut from the merchandise that is sold. The fundraiser was immensely successful in many ways; wrestling fans, for once, were able to get behind a genuine campaign that supported two of the most popular independent wrestlers on the market. The fundraiser was so popular that The Young Bucks, themselves, donated to the cause. Exactly a month after the fundraiser launched, the $1000 goal was reached, and a day after, the goal was exceeded by over $20.
Due to complications with the shipping of the items, we were unable to receive the items until after the New Year, and were furthermore unable to run an event until March 4th, which we held in conjunction with the Jan Hus Presbyterian & Church Outreach Center. This event, known as “Bucks for Vets”, was a very successful event in which we were able to provide dinner as well as the clothing that our donors helped us purchase, to veterans of wars ranging from the Vietnam War, the Korean War, Operation Desert Storm, as well as the War in Iraq. We got to know these people, and we made sure that they knew that young people deeply appreciate their efforts in battle and have a genuine desire to make a difference in their lives.
The Superkick Foundation was born during that event. When the team saw how much of a difference they were making, Matt felt obligated to take the platform on which “Superkick the Holidays” ran on, and expand it into something bigger that could reach more people in need, and continue to thank independent wrestlers—not just the Young Bucks, for their physical and mental contributions for the sake of opportunity. Matt also wanted to start what would be the first fan-led, pro-wrestling based charity organization that would attack the issues of low-income status, homelessness, and veteran outreach with a superkick—just like the foundation of the original “Superkick the Holidays” fundraiser.