Martial Arts School Raises Over $16,800 for Local Nonprofit

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – Martial Arts Family Fitness (MAFF), a family-owned and operated school dedicated to improving lives through martial arts, announced today that the nonprofit Storyteller Children’s Center will benefit from a donation of $16,852.07 raised through the school’s annual Kick-a-Thon fundraiser. Storyteller provides quality, tuition-free early childhood education for homeless and at-risk children, as well as comprehensive family support services. MAFF will present a check to Storyteller at a belt test and promotion ceremony on Thursday, September 27 at 6:00 PM. The event will take place at the MAFF’s facility at 122 E. Gutierrez Street.

“We are very pleased with the efforts of our school’s community in helping Storyteller Children’s Center,” said Grandmaster Dave Wheaton, founder and owner of Martial Arts Family Fitness. “This very successful fundraiser was driven by our students. I cannot be more proud of this amazing feat.”

“Once again, our students worked tirelessly to make a positive impact in our community,” added Master Melodee Meyer, co-owner of MAFF. “We set a goal of $15,000, and we surpassed it. Over the past few years have raised money over $100,000 for various nonprofit groups, and now we can add Storyteller to our great list.”

Students and staff of Martial Arts Family Fitness had the opportunity to kick for three minutes and raise money through either “per-kick” or “flat” pledges. As a group, the martial artists delivered over 9,200 kicks in the three minutes of the Kick-A-Thon. Morgan Love, an eleven year old martial artist, led the group with 350 kicks. The total raised includes donations made through a silent auction.

“It is gratifying to see our students value the importance of helping others and giving back to their community,” added Grandmaster Wheaton. “Our students are leaders, and we work to bring this out in them. Before every class we recite the ‘Student’s Creed’, which contains a statement that says: ‘I care for myself so that I can help care for others’, and the Kick-a-Thon exemplifies this statement.”

About Martial Arts Family Fitness

Martial Arts Family Fitness is an award winning school that opened its doors in Santa Barbara in 2002. The Chief Instructor, Master Dave Wheaton has trained in martial arts for over 40 years, and is the founder of Hapkido International, an organization that teaches his unique martial arts curriculum of Dynamic Circle Hapkido to many schools across the United States. Martial Arts Family Fitness teaches martial arts and fitness classes to adults and children, specializing in children’s life skills, youth leadership and family fitness. For information on Martial Arts Family Fitness visit or call 805.963.6233.


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