Join Me for a Zumba Class!

With just over two months to go until my Mt. Kilimanjaro climb, we are very excited! We are getting closer and closer to our goal – raising $30k! That $30k will be put toward the renovation of an ILS (Independent Living Services) Center for our developmentally disabled children on our Valhalla Campus.

To keep my workout going and to continue my momentum, I want to invite you to join me for a Zumba class on Tuesday, November 18th from 5:00-6:00pm at Club Fit of Briarcliff! Join me and together we can learn Zumba and either kick start our workout together or add a new challenge to our routine. The Zumba class is FREE and we encourage you to come and bring some friends! It is sure to be a great time to learn a new workout routine and have fun with friends, old and new! See you there!

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Climbing for a Purpose

By Kurt Kannemeyer

Two months ago, I lost the most important person in my life – my Mom. I am still struggling with the reality that she is gone. Every day comes with new challenges and opportunities to make her proud and live out her legacy. She was indeed a great woman.

As a result of my Mom’s battle with breast cancer, I made several trips to be by her side in South Africa. I haven’t truly updated my blog, and I must be honest – I have not been training. Finding out about my Mom’s diagnosis, truly hit me hard. It was as though my life literally stopped. Everything I held dear became of little importance and all I simply wanted to do was to be by her side. Even writing this short blog brings back so many memories and I am still missing her so dearly. Life is short and sometimes we take opportunities for granted – opportunities of showing affection, placing a call and sending our loved ones a text telling them that we love them. Fortunately, I always did that with my Mom – and I SO miss doing it again. I am back in the US now and the mountain I am about to climb in a couple of months from now will not only be for our children BUT also for my Mom.

I dedicate this last paragraph to her as an endearing gesture for the woman that she was:

Dear Mom,
I am so proud to be your son. Not a day goes by that I do not long to hear your voice, feel your touch and simply say, “I love you.” You taught me how to love, treat people with respect, care for the needy and destitute, brush my teeth, tie my shoelaces, sign my name and so much more. I will forever treasure these memories and I will never forget the life lessons and values that you’ve instilled in me. Mom, as I climb, I do so for you. Every step I am about to take will be a step of victory, knowing that you will be with me. You were in so much pain but through it all, you stayed strong and you fought a good fight. I will always love you and I am so thankful to have had you as my Mom. Your legacy will live on in and through me, dad, your daughters and grandchildren. I will NEVER forget you – LOVE you so much! Your Son, Kurt

Kurt and Mom

Sky’s the Limit for Local Mt. Kilimanjaro Climber

Ossining Resident to climb tallest mountain in the world to raise money for St. Christopher’s; partners with Club Fit for initiative

DOBBS FERRY, NY (April 2014) – In an environment where children are faced with their own “mountains” on a daily basis, Ossining resident Kurt Kannemeyer has become a role model. Kannemeyer, the director of development for the residential treatment center for special education students at St. Christopher’s, Inc. in Dobbs Ferry, announced today that he will climb the 19,500 foot Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania this August to raise funds for St. Christopher’s. Club Fit, a comprehensive health and fitness facility in Briarcliff Manor, has agreed to be at Kannemeyer’s side throughout the training process to help him reach the top.

Kannemeyer sets out in August for his seven-day climb to the summit of the highest mountain in Africa.

Last year Kannemeyer climbed Mt. Kilimajaro for the first time and after 17,000 ft suffered from breathing difficulties and had to end his effort. “An important part of successfully summiting Kilimanjara is recognizing your body’s limits and I knew for safety reasons that it was best I stop. Now I know how to properly train and prepare.”

“Initially I performed an assessment of Kurt’s current fitness level in order to develop a customized program specifically for him and this effort. Meeting with the client is always essential so I, as the personal trainer, can get to know our client’s goals and driving forces,” said Club Fit Personal Trainer Sarah Benishek. “During the next five months, Kurt will need to increase his aerobic fitness, endurance and prepare him for the changing altitudes he will experience.”

Kannemeyer’s goal is to raise XX for St. Christopher’s with funding going to programming for the students in transitional cottages to ensure they receive the necessary life skills to become independent once they graduate.

Since its inception in 1881, St. Christopher’s has helped teens with emotional, behavioral and learning disabilities by providing a residential program encompassing comprehensive therapeutic, social and family services coordinated with special education schooling.

“To have come so close last year only gives Kurt more of a driving force to finish the climb this time,” said Bob Maher, CEO. “Hard work pays off and dreams do become a reality. We all are supporting Kurt!”

Kannemeyer, a South African native, grew up in a ghetto outside of Port Elizabeth in the 1980s and early 1990s, when the apartheid regime that segregated blacks and whites, rich and poor, was only beginning to be dismantled. His mother and father raised Kannemeyer and his three sister in a tiny cottage. Despite an educational system lacking resources and morale, he was accepted to the University of Port Elizabeth and trained for a law degree.

Anyone looking to make a donation to Kannemeyer’s climb can contact him (914) 648-0817.

About St. Christopher’s, Inc.
St. Christopher’s, Inc. is an innovative adolescent development organization dedicated to helping children with special needs and their families by delivering a seamless continuum of care. We provide quality education; therapeutic intervention and life planning skills in a safe and nurturing environment with the goal of helping each child reach his/her full potential. For more information visit www.sc1881.com.

Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro: First Club Fit Fitness Assessment


My name is Kurt Kannemeyer and I am the Director of Development at St. Christopher’s, Inc. St. Christopher’s, Inc. is an innovative adolescent development organization dedicated to helping children with special needs and their families by delivering a seamless continuum of care. We provide quality education; therapeutic intervention and life planning skills in a safe and nurturing environment with the goal of helping each child reach his/her full potential.

Last year, I traveled all the way to Africa to attempt to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro for all of our children! Though I did not reach the top, I am determined to achieve my goal this year! My belief is that when we fail at something, we must try again and most importantly, never give up.

This year I have some very essential help from Club Fit! They have provided me with gym membership as well as trainer, Sarah. Just yesterday I met with Sarah and Liz Swan, Club Fit’s Social Media Specialist, along with other Club Fit Staff. After an initial consultation and orientation, we went straight for my fitness assessment! There was no better way to get into training mode than to jump right in!

In this blog, I intend to chronicle my journey back to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro. Stay tuned for fitness updates, healthy eating tips and more on my inspiration – the wonderful children of St. Christopher’s, Inc. For more information please visit, www.sc1881.org.

I hope you all will read along about my journey and achieving my goal of climbing to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro with the help of Club Fit and their amazing facilities!