Buck A Burpee Promotional Image

Buck-a-Burpee

Melsha and Scott wanted to raise enough money to cover a family’s stay at RMHC Northern Alberta for 35 nights. With a little sweat, sweat, and more sweat, they did just that; and then some.
Fundraiser Name
Buck-a-Burpee
Raised for
RMHC Northern Alberta
Amount Raised
$35,000
Nights accommodation
for families in need
225
"This project started with two friends getting together for a cause, not knowing if anyone would donate."
With a little help from Ronald McDonald House Charities Northern Alberta (RMHCNA), Melsha and Scott's friendship not only improves their lives but also those of the innumerable families staying at the Ronald McDonald House. They met each other over social media, and in-person for the first time at a networking event. Melsha introduced Scott to RMHCNA, where he was immediately touched by their work and committed himself to helping out.

Scott and his relatives host an annual Family Day volunteering event at the House in memory of his mother, and Melsha volunteers with the Christmas Concierge program, supporting parents through the holiday season.

In 2014, Melsha and Scott decided they wanted to do even more for the House. While driving to work one day, Scott had an epiphany. He was about to turn 35, but hated celebrating his own birthday. This year, instead of dodging festivities, he told Melsha he wanted to make his birthday about someone other than himself. Together, they developed a plan that would have a bigger impact than either could have imagined.
Burpee Training
"Inspiration comes to you when your heart is looking in the right direction. We all hear bad stories in the media, but we can all make another story to inspire others.”
The idea was to raise enough money in 35 days to cover a family’s stay at the Ronald McDonald House for 35 nights (an average cost of $7,525). Scott, being very athletic, wanted to incorporate a dose of action into the project. He decided to do a social media fundraiser inviting people to donate money for him to do “burpees”, a full-body exercise used in strength training where you pop up from a push-up into a squat position, jump and then do it all over again.

“Buck a Burpee” was born. Every day, for 35 days, Scott would get down and do 35 burpees. When Scott would wake in the morning, shoulders and thighs sore, he would think of the families he was helping. "The sore shoulders did not seem like a big deal anymore,” he recalls.

The effort was more than worth it: they raised a total of $35,000 without shedding a single dollar (just some sweat and a few pounds). Encouraged by the success of the first Buck a Burpee, the team decided to go for a second year. "Each burpee was more difficult, so I invented a chant, a jingle, for every burpee. ‘Getting knocked down, getting back up and celebrating. A cycle of life in every burpee.’"
Burpee Supporteers
That was his motto. In fields, parks, kitchens, living rooms, offices, schools and dance recitals, Scott dropped down everywhere and anywhere — all while being filmed by his fundraising partner, Melsha. He also had great “burpee-offs” with impressive adversaries like Canadian figure skating champion Patrick Chan. Scott’s best memory is of a seven-year-old girl recognizing him at a children's party and asking him to join in on the burpee challenge. "She had been practicing at home and went nuts when she saw me!" he laughs.

"This project started with two friends getting together for a cause, not knowing if anyone would donate,” says Melsha. "But through creativity and hard work —and thousands of burpees— it is possible to help others without spending money. Anyone can do a fundraiser. You can help people in your own way."

"Inspiration comes to you when your heart is looking in the right direction. We all hear bad stories in the media, but we can all make another story to inspire others,” adds Scott. It seems all we need to help others is to be brave enough to take the first step — or burpee!
Scott With Supporter
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Ronald McDonald Houses keep sick children close to their families, and to the care they need to heal.
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