Brook Nash said she feels honored that the Savannah/Chatham Court Appointed Special Advocates, or CASA, board nominated her to participate in Dancing with Savannah Stars.
A busy wife, a mom of three children ages 6 and younger, and full-time business owner, Nash said this was a family decision.
“I feel like it’s the least I can do,” she said.
Nash graduated from University of North Carolina Wilmington, then pursued a master’s degree in public health at the University of Georgia. She met her husband, Chris, in Athens.
He is an account executive for Outfront Advertising, serves as her right-hand man and wears the “Mr. Mom” hat whenever needed. She definitely needs his help during this 13-week commitment to raise $10,000 and learn to cha-cha for the big event.
After spending several years in Atlanta working for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as a health communications specialist, Brook Nash was introduced to a unique style of fitness. In 2011, after giving birth to her second child, she discovered Pure Barre.
“Pure Barre uses — you guessed it — a ballet bar and tiny, isometric movements to burn fat and sculpt long, lean muscles — no dancing experience required,” PureBarre.com says on its website. “Press play to start targeting your inner and outer thighs with this high-intensity but low-impact workout.”
Nash felt a stirring to step out from behind a desk job and decided to open a Pure Barre Studio in Savannah. Leaving Atlanta behind, she and her husband moved to the Savannah area in 2012 and, in 2014, put down roots in Richmond Hill. In 2015, Nash became co-owner of Pure Barre’s Maui, Hawaii location.
Richmond Hill is a place of calm for this busy family.
“I love the sense of community; I think it’s a great place to raise a family,” Brook Nash said.
Her oldest son, Landon, 6, attends Richmond Hill Primary School; Stella, 4 is at Richmond Hill Montessori Preschool; and Everett, 17 months, is at First Christian Academy.
Even with her plate so full, Nash accepted the Dancing with Savannah Stars nomination as a challenge and opportunity to contribute to children who are less fortunate.
“These kids have no one. Being a mom, my heart goes out to them,” she said. “We are fortunate here in Richmond Hill, but this is still very close to home. This is the eighth annual fundraiser and the biggest one they do yearly. If they reach $80,000, it gets them through the year and on to the next fundraiser.”
The money raised contributes to training volunteer advocates. The goal is to pair each child with an advocate. This money will play a role in CASA being able to provide that. These advocates are trained and prepared to step into a system that provides a constant support to children in the foster system. Only about 60 percent of the children in the system have an advocate; the goal is make sure every child has an advocate.
“CASA is a national nonprofit organization which trains and supports volunteers to speak out and act as advocates for the best interests of abused and neglected children,” according to casaforchildren.org. “They are trained to work within the child welfare and family court systems and are appointed by judges to individual cases. With the help of a CASA volunteer, a child is half as likely to languish in the foster care system, and that much more likely to find a safe and permanent home.”
After being partnered with professional dancer Adriano Camardese, Nash said the real work is in the fundraising. The dancing is challenging, but not the main focus. Nash is planning a Pure Barre class for Oct. 21 at Forsyth Park in Savannah. The proceeds will contribute to her personal goal of $10,000. Donations will be accepted at the event.
The eighth annual Dancing with the Savannah Stars will be held Nov. 12 at the Lucas Theatre in Savannah. All tickets purchased through Nash will contribute to the fundraising goal.
For more information on the event, how to donate or buy tickets, go to www.dancingwithsavannahstars.org, select “Brook Nash” to see her progress and hear more about her story. For more on CASA, go to www.casaforchildren.org.