Crushing Cancer Through Collaboration

On March 6-12, 2022, UVAC’s personal trainers and fitness class instructors will participate in the 8th Annual Crush Cancer fundraising drive on behalf of Dartmouth-Hitchcock’s Norris Cotton Cancer Center. This will mark UVAC’s third year of participation in the event. In 2021, the UVAC staff, members, and community raised over $12k dollars on behalf of the NCCC.

The goal is for personal trainers, instructors, gyms, and studios in the Upper Valley to band together to raise funds for cancer research, clinical trials, and cancer patient support services at the NCCC.

The fundraiser was established eight years ago, by personal trainer and fitness instructor, Wayne Burwell. Two years ago, Jonathan Dame, owner of FIT-Rx in Lebanon, NH, joined the cause. Both had lost family members to cancer and Jonathan’s wife battled breast cancer with the help of patient support services at the NCCC. Since then, they have raised over $172,047 for the NCCC through their annual Crush Cancer fundraising drive.

“I would like to see this event grow and spread,” says Jonathan. “It would be great if we could get other gyms in NH and VT involved.” According to Jonathan, they would also like to recruit and involve other facilities within the Norris Cotton Cancer Center service area. “We have had spinning classes, HIIT, Yoga, and stretching classes reaching a wider audience,” he says.

Jonathan also reports that early on, they would start their drive with a boot-camp and then move on to “Train Your Trainer” whereby clients, family, friends would pay for their personal trainers to do any type of workout or workouts of the client’s choice. “As grueling as this was,” wrote Jonathan, “it really helped build a relationship with our clients.”

As an alternative method to fundraise for Crush Cancer, Wayne and Jonathan established the idea that trainers, coaches, and instructors hold classes specifically meant to contribute the participation fee to The Friends of the NCCC.

During the week of March 6-12, UVAC’s fitness staff will host virtual and in-person classes and will invite class participants to donate towards this Crush Cancer drive. Trainers will each have their individual personal fundraising pages and may tap into their competitive natures to challenge each other to raise the most funds for this important cause. But it’s all about comradery.

Through the generosity of the Jack & Dorothy Byrne Foundation, gifts of $100-$499 will be matched 1:1, and gifts of $500 or more will be matched 2:1.

UVAC’s Personal Training Director, Erin Buck strongly believes that this fundraiser brings the entire Upper Valley fitness community together in a vital collaboration towards cancer research and prevention.

By UVAC member, writer Chris H. Hadgis


If you choose to mail your donation, please send to: D-H/Geisel Office of Development

Attn: Gift Recording, One Medical Center Drive, Lebanon, NH 03756

Please make checks payable to DH-H/FNCCC. Include the name of the fundraiser/tribute you wish for your donation to be applied to.

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