Meet Judith Ras and Find Out What She’s Doing to Help Sint Maarten in Washington DC

Judith Ras lived in Sint Maarten until she was 18 years old. She lived through Hurricane Luis when she was only 13 years old, so she knew firsthand how much devastation a monster hurricane could cause. With friends and family still on the island as Hurricane Irma hit, she already knew they’d need help.

Ras had been on the phone with her family members, before, during and after the storm. Following the storm she did everything in her power to help, stating, “I helped where I could, using everything I could use, directly after the storm for my family and other families. I told everyone I knew, even random people who asked questions about my Sint Maarten t-shirt while standing in line, about what had happened to my island.”

When she heard that a group of friends from the island were starting an organization called Rebuild SXM to raise money for the people of Sint Maarten, she knew she had to be a part of it. And that’s when her and friend, Chelsea, came up with the idea for a fun, lively fundraiser right there in Washington DC.

“After the hurricane in Sint Maarten I was talking to Chelsea about it and she wanted to be able to help in some way. Instead of just giving me money, she brainstormed an event where she and some other instructors would volunteer to host a ZOCA class for donations.”

ZOCA is a dance workout inspired by the colorful carnivals of the Caribbean and the new boom in African pop music. ZOCA is a highly effective and exhilarating workout aimed at not only improving strength, muscle tone and endurance but confidence and body image as well.

As for Chelsey, she’s an avid aerobics enthusiast who has sampled a variety of dance and dance aerobics styles including Zumba, Ballet, Jazz, Hip-Hop, Barre, and most recently, ZOCA. Through ZOCA, Chelsey was exposed to the irresistible world of Soca, Reggae, and African pop rhythms and choreography. She became a regular attendee of ZOCA classes and events, and earned her instructor certification in July 2015 after enthusiastic encouragement from her fellow Zocanistas!

About the event

Join us at CityDance POP! at Tenleytown (next to Sahara Dance on Wisconsin Ave.) on November 17th to have fun, get fit, and support a great cause all at the same time! A donation to RebuildSXM is the entry price. Show us your receipt or donate at the door. Then, ZOCA the night away!

Click on the event invite below to go to Facebook and sign up!

Please help rebuild SXM and give today. Click here to visit the SXM Strong donate page. Thank you!

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Jon Ferlise

I fell in love with the island of Saint Martin the first time I visited to celebrate my 40th birthday in May of 2009. Since then, I've spent most birthdays there, and have visited countless other times getting to know this wonderful place and the friendly locals that make it so special. I adore the culture, the people, the community, and the beauty of this stunning island. SXM Strong is a website that I started to support humanitarian relief efforts following Hurricane Irma. There was no plan, it just evolved as I witnessed the devastation that Irma caused the island and the huge need to communicate and disseminate information about what had happened and how people could help support this island and its people.

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