Martial Arts Tournament Raises Money for Kids

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Since 1897 Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare has provided tailored services to children with rare conditions like Cerebral Palsy and Spina Bifida.

Mattevis Martial Arts Academy kicked off their 10th annual benefit to help raise money for the Minnesota based healthcare program.

More than 100 competitors from Canada and the Midwest participated in the tournament sparring against each other in two minute rounds of karate, Taekwondo and other styles of martial arts.

“With martial arts we’re trying to teach more than just kicking and punching,” Mattevis Martial Arts Academy owner Stefan Stein said. “We’re trying to teach them self–discipline, but also compassion for other people. It’s an art that can only be done with others and we need to teach them to be thoughtful and think about their community and not just about themselves. That’s what we’re trying to encourage with this.”

Raising more than $8,000 dollars was the goal.

The money will go to patients to help them pay for things not covered by insurance such as therapy services and communication devices.

“The insurance industry really doesn’t recognize them in any way,” said Dr. Kevin Murphy with the Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare Duluth Clinic. “They’d like to but it’s just not enough of a marketplace so they fall between the cracks. It’s very expensive some these power wheelchairs will costs $12-15,000 dollars.”

Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare has 12 clinics in the Northland.

They see about 3,000 patients a year.

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