Move4Malawi Athletes

From Aug 1 through Sept 25, 2020, there are a lot more people biking, running, hiking, walking, inspiring each other and hopefully inspiring many to donate! Our fundraiser this year is our Move4Malawi Challenge. We are challenging teams to move 16,000 km, the distance from Vancouver to Malawi. A team’s total distance is achieved by moving, and from donations (1 km per $1).

We have over 167 participants on 16 teams! People moving in Smithers BC, in Delta, in Langley, in Vancouver, in Victoria, and even in Switzerland. We want you to meet all of them, but at least some of them. Here are some profiles to let you know some of the “who” and “why’s” in this diverse and interesting group.

I’m a keen fan of Stand as One ministry as I have a personal connection to the continent having grown up in South Africa and also to Malawi having worked there on 3 different occasions. I really appreciate the sustainable approach that Stand as One is trying to deliver and the careful way in which they are expanding their programs in Malawi. As a bonus, I like to exercise, so biking and running for them is fun and a given. Barry is the Captain of team Bulkley4Malawi.

I do not consider myself an athlete because I am a selfish runner and run to ground myself which allows me to be a strong and courageous Emergency nurse, Nurse Educator, Forensic Nurse, wife, and mother. I run 100 miles a month and truly enjoy every step. Facts about me aside from being a selfish runner… I know all the geographic time periods by heart, my favourite dish is from South Korea, Bibimbap. I’m horrifically late for everything. Despite my tardiness, awkward small talk topic and obsession for spicy food, I’m extremely happy to show up and have my efforts contribute to our team to accumulate more miles and funds to share our strength and resilience with communities in Malawi, Africa.

The mission of Stand as One Ministry has always resonated with me personally. “our mission is to provide Shelter, Training, Agriculture, Nutrition, and Development. We empower people living in poverty to transform their lives, their children’s futures and their communities.” I truly admire the work done, to empower people, to equip them through training and development to take them out of poverty through their own efforts! Supported by this ministry, kids and their families are able to work, to accomplish, to learn, and through that to flourish. How awesome is that!! It must be said that this ministry cares equally about the physical needs, the emotional needs, and most importantly the spiritual needs of those they support. That is why I participate, that is why I ride my bike to achieve some fundraising goals, that is why I ask you to join this effort too!
Harmen Berghuis – Captain of the PedalPushers

My name is Gary Schenk, and for the past six years, I have captained a team from Victoria Christian Reformed Church to participate in the Ride For Refuge for Stand As One Ministry. With the changes to the Ride resulting from the pandemic, I was so excited to learn that Dan and Irene had launched a new initiative for 2020 called Move4Malawi. This was the perfect response at the perfect time to engage all of us in a healthy activity with a purpose. When I think about how COVID has impacted us locally, I can’t imagine the impact on the economy and society of countries like Malawi who lack many of the resources we take for granted. I feel like the pandemic has made us all a little more self-centred, but it’s so important to remember that we still need to act globally to make a positive impact in the lives of others. I am grateful for the opportunity to participate in this way and excited to share the opportunity with family, friends, and coworkers. It’s been easier to engage others to participate and raise awareness of Stand As One Ministry, even if they aren’t doing it as a fundraiser initially. We’re not even halfway through and it’s already been a huge success, and I can’t wait to see what we can accomplish as we Move4Malawi together!

This is Emily Brunner, a member of Spineworks Dream Team, wife of a firefighter, mom of a 1-year-old cutie, an RMT, and a recent traveller to Malawi. This trip allowed Emily to witness the challenges faced by the villages we work with, plus allowed her to share some of her heart and energy with them. She is super excited to be a part of this fundraiser, and a part of a change for Malawi.

You’ve probably wondered how we have a team from Switzerland! Meet Martina. She is on the Swiss Power Dream Team. She was an exchange student here in University, now lives back in Switzerland where she works for Infront Sports & Media.
“A big honor to support this cool project of “my Canadian family“ who gave me a very warm and
wonderful home years ago. Spent some of the most beautiful and happiest months in my life at the Schat‘s home! 💙 Thankful forever!!!”

“I’m Linda Jones and I’m a member of Bulkley4Malawi in Smithers BC. As Dan and Irene both grew up in Smithers they have many friends, family and supporters here in the north. We started out as neighbours and although we now live miles apart we’ve kept in touch and shared some special times together. I’ve been putting on the miles with my new e-bike, and I love the Move4Malawi challenge! What better way is there to keep active during this strange Covid-19 time and raise money for Stand as One and their amazing ministry. Our family loves how Stand as One teaches sustainable farming and enables villages, families, individuals and children in so many ways. I would love to go to Malawi one day to see it all in action, but until then I’ll bike, walk, paddle, golf, swim and perhaps even jog as many km’s as I can, with my pal Rossi at my side, in support of this amazing charity.”

Let’s meet another move4malawi athlete, how about Jim Stewart. Jim is on the Keep Calm and Continue On Team. He loves to cycle, competes successfully in his age group with Ironman and ITU Triathlons, is a father of 3, grandfather of 3, and husband of 1.
Here’s what he says, “I have been to Malawi to see the good work that Stand as One is involved with. Educating people on how to become self-sufficient through farming and other skills training is creating hope for the future for many families.”

“My name is Cassidy! I’m a retired all star cheerleader turned outdoor adventurist. I’m always in search of the next great scramble, hike, or bike with my best friend and adventure companion: a 3 year old golden retriever who sheds his golden fibers of love to all and puts a smile on everyone’s face. I now work as a registered nurse, and as a family-minded person, I really enjoy the way communities build and grow. When Dan, an amazing coworker and truly genuine human, told me about his mission, it moved me; I wanted to help. The idea of focusing on agriculture and creating a sustainable life for anyone is a gift not everyone gets, but should have the opportunity to have, of course I said yes.”
Cassidy Holm is on the Move2Feed1000 team and is moving VERY well.

“I was introduced to Stand for One Ministry through a friend and became immediately interested in what they were doing for the people of Malawi. Hearing stories of Malawi from the people on the ground, helped paint a clearer picture and a better understanding of what is needed to truly help the Malawians. I’m participating in this challenge to help raise money and awareness for this great cause and at the same time, keeping myself active and encouraging others to do so.
Fun facts: I love endurance sports – triathlon.
I’m a chiropractor and I’m passionate about encouraging my patients to use exercise and nutrition as a tool for optimizing their health.
I LOVE Indian food.”
Dr. Jeff Watts, BSc, DC
Jeff adds a lot of kilometres on to the Spineworks Dream Team.

We are celebrating sibling togetherness now. Meet Irene, Christina and John. They are teammates on “Keep Calm and Continue On”. They all live in the Lower Mainland, the other 5 siblings live elsewhere, yes 8 in all! John is the oldest sibling, retired, the girls still work and all celebrated their father’s 97th birthday last Sunday! Great work from this family!