When you cheer on your high school or all star squad, you’re not just building pyramids and muscles, you’re building lifelong character traits you’ll carry with you from high school to college and all the way to your first job! Nothing builds leadership, confidence, positive energy and motivational skills quite like cheerleading. It takes confidence to command a crowd to its feet, and a talent for motivation to rally a sports team during a rough game. Every time you take to the field or practice, you are strengthening these skills and learning new ones.
THERE ARE A MILLION REASONS AMERICA NEEDS CHEERLEADERS!
We’ll start the list, and then you tell us yours
on Varsity.com. Click on America Needs Cheerleaders
to tell your story!
America Needs Cheerleaders…
…BECAUSE CHEERLEADERS WIN GAMES
Jennesy Raaum Taberna, coach of Culberston High School in Montana, will never forget a special basketball tournament. There was one minute left in the fourth quarter of the first game in a tournament. A 3-point shot, cheered on loudly by the cheerleaders, propelled the team to a 4-point win. The basketball coach even greeted the squad on the bus ride home with a rare compliment: “We couldn’t have done it without you, girls!” He knew that the cheering of the squad made the difference and gave them the proper credit. It’s no wonder they went on to win the entire tournament!
…BECAUSE CHEERLEADERS CARE
Sarah Cronk and Sarah Herr, two varsity cheerleaders from the American School Spirit Award-winning Pleasant Valley High School in Bettendorf, Iowa, started a movement that has inspired cheerleaders all over the United States. Along with three other Pleasant Valley teammates, they started a special needs team, the Spartan Sparklers. They were determined that this special team not just learn to cheer and work as a team, but be a part of their community by joining them on the field at football games and other community events. The program was a success and the “Sarahs” launched “The Sparkle Effect,” which shows other cheerleaders how to start a similar program in their schools and communities.
…BECAUSE CHEERLEADERS LEAD BY EXAMPLE
Misericordia University’s cheerleaders in Dallas, Pennsylvania recently organized a fundraiser, Cougars for a Cure, with the goal of collecting a donation for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital. The Cougar cheerleaders sold t-shirts and other merchandise and held a 50/50 raffle drawing at a recent game against their rival school, King’s College, raising more than$1,500 for the cause. They also reached out to a local all star program, the West Side All Starz, and invited them to perform at the half time show. The college cheerleaders challenged the all star team to find sponsors for their half time performance, and the West Side All Starz rose to the challenge and raised more than $1,600 for Cougars for a Cause.
…BECAUSE CHEERLEADERS INSPIRE ALL OF US
Muscular Dystrophy Association National Spokesperson Abbey Umali is the ultimate cheerleader for all cheerleaders. As a special guest of UCA’s National High School Cheerleading Championship in 2008, Abbey first joined the cheer community. This year, MDA sent Abbey and her parents with a special message of thanks on behalf of MDA for 25 years of raising funds and awareness for the charity, raising nearly one million dollars in donations and becoming an essential part of the annual Jerry Lewis Telethon. Abbey charmed the packed arena at the NHSCC and sang a song for all of the cheerleaders competing that weekend.
… BECAUSE CHEERLEADERS MAKE DREAMS COME TRUE
NCA and the Make-A-Wish Foundation® work together to grant wishes for children with life-threatening medical conditions. Each year at NCA camps, cheerleaders are challenged to use their leadership and teamwork skills in at least one fundraiser for Make-A-Wish®. The “Top Five” teams are rewarded with an additional donation for both their team and for Make-A-Wish. The’09-’10 Winner was East Bernard High School who raised over $1,800 selling mascot tattoos and baked goods during football season. This team makes dreams come true every year in their small community by donating their time and efforts wherever they are needed!
…BECAUSE THEY RISE TO THE “AMERICA NEEDS CHEERLEADERS” CHALLENGE
All cheerleaders can be a part of National School Spirit Day this year by standing out and being visible leaders in their communities. All you need to do is four hours of community service in the week leading up to National School Spirit Day – September 10, 2010. Tell us about what you are doing to make a difference and you’ll be entered to win a School Spirit Prize Pack from Varsity. For more information, go to nationalschoolspiritday.org.
…BECAUSE CHEERLEADERS PROMOTE SPORTSMANSHIP
Two rival all star teams, Charlotte Allstars Teal and the Stingray Allstars Smoke, put aside their rivalry at UCA’s National All Star Cheerleading Championship and spent their Saturday night together at Planet Hollywood in Orlando, Florida. The teams dressed in their team colors, but made the mandatory rule that they had to sit next to someone on their rival team for dinner, and get to know someone new.
We want to hear your voice on Varsity.com! As a cheerleader, why does America need you? Look for America Needs Cheerleaders
or join AMERICA NEEDS CHEERLEADERS on Facebook and post your reason there.