Cherish Challenge offers variety of fitness for scholarship fundraiser

Sardis secondary's Cherish Challenge is a scholarship fundraiser in memory of former student Andrea Cherish Nicole Steegstra.

Fitness instructor

Fitness instructor

The leadership class at Sardis secondary is changing things up this year for a special scholarship fundraiser in memory of a late student.

On Tuesday, the Cherish Challenge fundraiser will get underway where people can take part in Zumba, kickboxing, Pilates, and yoga — all for a good cause.

All proceeds raised that day will go towards a Sardis scholarship in memory of former student Andrea Cherish Nicole Steegstra, who died while tubing on the Vedder River in the summer of 2008.

The fitness challenge is a change from their annual Run for Cherish scholarship fundraiser which brings in about $1,000 each year.

“When our (leadership) group was discussing it, we were thinking of ways to promote it to more people,” says Grade 10 student Myria DeJager.

The class figured “if there were different events, more people would want to participate,” she says.

So they switched from the annual run to an afternoon of four different types of fitness taking place at different times throughout the afternoon.

First up, Natalie Spencer will be leading Zumba, next is kickboxing with Tonia Penner, Pilates will be taught by Jolene Sharpe, and to finish the event Danica Rose Giesbrecht will lead yoga.

Cost is $15 and the event runs for three hours.

It also gives people the opportunity to try out a variety of exercises that they haven’t yet tried, says Pilates instructor Sharpe.

“For the price, if you ever wanted to try any one of these events you can try it all in one afternoon,” she adds.

The Cherish Challenge is open to people of all ages and abilities.

Another bonus, adds DeJager, is “expanding it to other schools and people, plus it’s taught by certified fitness instructors.”

Participants are asked to bring a yoga mat if they have one as the school has a limited supply.

There will be water and fruit during the event, and wraps and booster juice afterwards. Advanced registration is recommended to ensure there is enough food for participants, but people can also sign up at the door.

“It’s a great way to promote activity,” says leadership teacher Mary Casey.

“For all that you get, it’s a win-win all around,” adds Sharpe.

The Cherish Challenge runs Tuesday, March 3 from 3 to 6 p.m. in the gym at Sardis secondary. Cost is $15 (cash only), and payment is made upon arrival. To register or for more info, email

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