Hi everyone, I'm Dan. I'm 23-years-old and I'm a proud, Co-founder of WrestleCares non-profit organisation. Diagnosed with Tourette's Syndrome in 2008, caused severe anxiety especially as I grew into a young adult. Experiencing some of the worst emotions known to us, emerged a depressive state that dragged me to rock bottom, severely affecting my life. It wasn't until I began speaking out to my family, friends, and girlfriend, that I was able to take control of life and get back on track. I owe my life to these people and I will never be able to repay them.
In the Lion's Den is a reference to the origin of my name, as told in the Bible. Much like every biblical story, they have a meaning and this particular story focuses on how trusting in your beliefs, and yourself, can eventually save your life.
My main interests are professional wrestling, music, and giving back, as well as socialising with my friends.
Founded in 2019, a group of hardcore wresting fans wanted to combine their shared passions in life, giving back and professional wrestling. So, by December that year WrestleCares was established. A small, non-profit, organisation with the main goal of delivering bespoke shoeboxes of wrestling toys and merchandise around the Hull community. Whilst simultaneously spreading the joy of professional wrestling that they collected as children. In their first year, WrestleCares proudly donated twenty shoeboxes to underprivileged children, from their own pockets, so they could have the opportunity to open a present on Christmas day, thus, cementing their place in the community and beginning their journey to success.
In February of 2020, whilst attending a wrestling event at Tribal bar on Kingswood’s retail park, I was proudly offered a position in this charity as their lead patron. Of course, I happily accepted. I was welcomed onto the team with fresh ideas to help grow the WrestleCares brand. Along with ideas and aspirations became the unforeseen damage caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. When the news struck of the virus, it was clear to see that future events would come to a crashing halt. Was this the end for WrestleCares before it had even started?
August 1st, 2020. The date known as our resurgence. WrestleCares underwent a full rebranding of their product and logos that was accompanied by the tagline of: “In a sea of black, we sail in orange”. The colour of our logo symbolizes our bright future with a burst of passion. We said, “Change is happening” and change it did. We announced our partnership with Hull & East Yorkshire Children’s University and got straight to work. By September we had been reached by an online wrestling community known as the Elite Wrestling Community (EWC) and an online shop called WrestleBox, they loved our cause. After that we established many local and national support in which we felt a combination of relief and pride. Was this small demographic of professional wrestling fans larger than we anticipated?
WrestleCares Christmas appeal 2020:
WrestleCares had their eyes set on designating more than double the number of shoeboxes than last year, and this year they were blessed by something that was unknown to them in their previous year, donors. Very generous individuals and businesses that kindly donated over one-thousand items of anything from trading cards to plush toys so that we could create as many personalized shoeboxes as possible to be delivered to children in care. Throughout the autumn period, Andy, Ash, and myself had appearances for podcasts, radio interviews and magazine articles by some established members of the wrestling community such as Inside the Ropes magazine. It really was a dream come true to see how a small idea had become such an active member of so many diverse communities and cultures.
November ended our donation drive and began our appropriately named, Donation-Isolation. This was a measure that was put into place to protect the donations and children receiving them, to its fullest extent. Undergoing a two-week isolation and then accompanied with a thorough cleaning process thanks to cleaning products donated by RoseShine Cleaning Contractors. After the clean they were packaged-up to superstar specifics, then isolated for another ten days before being picked-up by a member of HEY Children’s University. Thanks to the many selfless donations we received and equipped with a personalised letter of motivation referencing the specific superstar in the shoebox, we managed to create over 50 boxes for underprivileged children.