Barstool Sports will donate $182,000 to a charity that helps veterans receive mental healthcare treatment after the sports blog’s founder promised he’d match donations in a “spur of the moment” tweet -- but he doesn't seem to regret the decision.
It all started Monday when a popular Barstool personality known simply as Uncle Chaps, who is a Marine who hosts military podcast “Zero Blog Thirty,” celebrated Veteran’s Day by tweeting his fan base to donate funds to Headstrong – a group that aims to provide “confidential, cost-free, and frictionless” services to veterans dealing with military trauma.
“’I’m gonna open my Venmo and donate everything to @HeadstrongProj which helps veterans dealing with PTSD,” Chaps tweeted. “Let’s change some lives on a Monday.”
Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy took notice and announced he would match the final tally, which seemed to encourage the site’s massive fan base to open their wallets and donate through Venmo, a social payment service.
“Let’s bankrupt Dave and change some lives tonight. Win-win,” Chaps wrote.
Portnoy joked throughout the evening that he was “in the dark” about how much he’d owe, while using a grimacing face emoji to respond to an update that he would owe at least $26,000. When the midnight deadline finally hit, Barstool fans donated $91,000, meaning Portnoy would match the total and shell out another $91,000 himself for a total of $182,000.
Headstrong, a partner of Weill Cornell Medicine, quickly took to Twitter to thank Portnoy and Barstool for their efforts.
“We can’t thank you enough. This is truly awesome and making a huge difference in our mission. Thank you for everything,” the Headstrong Project’s Twitter account wrote.
Headstrong is a nonprofit that aims to heal “the hidden wounds of war” that impact post-9/11 veteran and their families.