Filed under: maritime, maritime heritage, Nonprofit | Tags: Concert Series for the Seamen's Bethel Restoration Project, Dillon Bustin, Mariners' Home, New Bedford Port Society, Rum-Soaked Crooks, Seamen's Bethel
I’m on the board of managers of one of the most amazing maritime nonprofit organizations anywhere. It’s called the New Bedford Port Society and this paragraph from our website explains how we got started:
In the late 1820′s, when New Bedford’s whaling industry was at its peak , several of the city’s leading citizens gave their deep consideration to the “character building” of nearly five thousand seamen employed out of this port. On June 2, 1830 they organized under the title of the New Bedford Port Society, for the moral improvement of seamen and later became incorporated under the following act: An Act To Incorporate The New Bedford Port Society For The Moral Improvement Of Seamen.
One result of successfully discharging our mission for 130 years is that now we own two of the oldest and most important historic buildings in New Bedford, Massachusetts: the Seamen’s Bethel and the Mariners Home. In fact, from a maritime history/heritage perspective, it could be argued that we have two of the most important buildings anywhere.
Beautiful historic buildings like ours require constant TLC and this can be is extremely expensive. We are currently underway with major restoration/preservation projects on both the Mariners’ Home and the Seamen’s Bethel and a result of this we have begun planning a major capital campaign so that future generations will be able to experience these historic treasures.
We recently announced a series of events called The Concert Series for the Seamen’s Bethel Restoration Project (simple, unambiguous name) and from which all of the proceeds will go to a special fund designated for Bethel repairs. The first concert is Thursday, October 21, 2010 at 7 pm and it will feature the storytelling and singing of Dillon Bustin and the Rum-Soaked Crooks. It’s sure to be a great time for a great cause.
I hope that you will join us but if you can’t, I still invite you to participate in supporting one of America’s most important maritime treasures. If the concert doesn’t fit your schedule or is too far away, please consider purchasing a ticket and donating it back to the Port Society so that we can sell it again. It’s a powerful way to leverage your gift.
If you want to contribute funds, products, services or ideas, please don’t hesitate to email me or leave a comment below. Every little bit makes a real difference.
Thanks for putting up with this plug for a nonprofit that is very important to me and hopefully to many other Sea-Fever readers.
Filed under: Education, Environment, maritime, Nonprofit, sail training, tall ships
Okay if you visit this blog you must like boats. So join me in helping one of America’s most historic and beautiful vessels win a $100,000. grant from American Express.
How many times do you find yourself wanting to support a worthy sail training cause but can’t afford it? Well, here’s your opportunity to make a real difference and not have it cost you a dime! It’s pretty simple too, just watch this:
Go here everyday between now and May 12th and vote for Schooner Adventuress and the odds are she’ll win. She’s currently got a thin lead, let’s make sure she keeps it.
Filed under: Education, Experiential education, new media, Nonprofit, sail training, tall ships
New media tools allow nonprofits to reach out in ways never seen before. I’ve written about this previously here.
In the spirit of the Holidays, I present the following public service announcement for a new organization called the American Tall Ship Institute.
Their message is simple and concise. “Here’s what we can do, here’s what we need.”
If you-know-who ever read my previous post, this would be a good place to help out. Hope somebody can help make some kids’ Christmas really extra special.
Filed under: Education, Experience, Leadership, life, Nonprofit, sail training
I was recently “tagged” by my leadership blogger friend Ed Brenegar of Leading Questions to participate in Alex Shalman’s Compassion, Caring, Charity project. This is the first time that I’ve been “tagged” like this so here goes…
Last week was a very busy one for me with several of my nonprofit interests.
On Sunday and Monday, I traveled to Woods Hole, MA to participate in SEA Education Association’s semi-annual Trustee and Overseer’s meetings. This amazing organization sends young college students to sea on two tall ships, Corwith Cramer and Robert C. Seamans, for a fully accredited semester long programs. They also have summer high school programs and an occasional adult experience like the upcoming SEA Expedition program sailing throughout French Polynesia over 7 days in January 2008 (There’s still time to sign up! )
On Wednesday evening I had a Mattapoisett Community Sailing Association (MattSail) board meeting where I am pleased to serve as a pro-bono consultant to this community based nonprofit that teaches young people how to sail and more. From concept in January 2007 to running a pilot program teaching 12 kids to sail in July 2007 to having a Summer Gala in August 2007, MattSail is in the enviable position of having nearly 2 years of operating budget in the “hold” and a very promising future on the horizon! It been exciting to be part of this nonprofit startup.
Finally on Friday, I participated in a day long meeting at my high school alma mater, Tabor Academy, where I have served on the Headmaster’s Council for the past few years. Tabor, also commonly known as “The School by the Sea”, is where I began my sail training experience on the schooner Tabor Boy, an experience that taught me more about leadership (and life) than nearly any since. Earlier this year I launched The Tabor Boy Project which is a social media living history project and online community focused on Tabor Boy’s 50 plus years of changing young lives at sea under sail.
The above three organizations are all amazing and I devote lots of time, energy, thought and resources to each of them. However, in thinking about the Compassion, Caring, Charity project I kept gravitating to another incredible organization, Rocking the Boat in the Bronx, NY.
I first came across Rocking the Boat when I was executive director of the American Sail Training Association. In 2003, Adam Green, founder and executive director, attended the 30th annual ASTA conference in Providence, RI along with several of the program’s young boatbuilders. They set up one of their beautiful boats in the hotel lobby for all of the conferees and hotel guests to marvel over.
From the Rocking the Boat website:
Rocking the Boat is a boatbuilding and on-water education program based out of the southwest Bronx, New York City. Through a hands-on alternative approach to education and youth development, Rocking the Boat addresses the need for inner city youth to achieve practical and tangible goals, relevant to both everyday life and future aspirations. This process allows high school students to acquire practical, academic, and social skills. Rocking the Boat runs programming in both boatbuilding and environmental science, coordinating three after school and summer programs in each discipline annually, working directly with over 150 students, all of whom receive high school credit. During the process of building a traditional wooden boat, Rocking the Boat students create something not only beautiful, but practical in their own lives, bridging urban and natural life within their neighborhoods. This approach is mirrored in the on-water education program through direct focus on Bronx River habitat monitoring and restoration and through maritime life skills programming. Both programs allow students opportunities to gain a deeper awareness of their own abilities and possibilities in the natural and urban world.
This short video does a great job of capturing the essence of this powerful program. PLEASE watch it!
The Rocking the Boat website has lots of great photos and other interesting information about how they employ an effective peer leadership model to bring the art and craft of boatbuilding to under-served, at-risk youth in the Bronx, NY and change lives in the process.
In the September 10, 2007 issue of Time Magazine, Rocking the Boat and Adam Green were recognized in an article entitled The Activists as part of the cover story The Case for National Service. (Green was a 1998 Echoing Green Foundation Fellow.)
On this Thursday (November 15, 2007), Rocking the Boat will be hosting their Whitehaul Award Fundraiser where they will be recognizing Edmund A. Stanley, Jr. and Jennifer Stanley Founder and President of The Robert Bowne Foundation. From Rocking the Boat’s website:
“In creating The Whitehall Award, Rocking the Boat is proud to recognize leaders in the fields of experiential education, environmental activism, and youth development. The honor is named for the distinctively elegant and practical wooden boat design that forms the majority of Rocking the Boat’s hand-built fleet. The Whitehall represents a “golden period” of maritime design and craftsmanship, its reliable and beautiful form remaining largely consistent since 1690.”
The event will be at the South Street Seaport Museum in New York City and I believe that there are tickets still available. So, if you are in the New York area and are interested in helping young people “find a star to steer by,” please considering going and supporting this worthy cause!
Part of the Caring Compassion Charity project involves “tagging” others, so these people need to look out because they are “it”:
- Will Van Dorp writes my favorite maritime culture blog called tugster: a water blog about “New York harbor, the sixth borough.”
- John Konrad is a master mariner, webMaster and CEO of gCaptain.com, a single stop for all things maritime. He writes a great blog and created a cool Digg-like maritime news website called Discoverer where you can always find something interesting!
- Scott Allen, PhD is the founder of the Center for Leader Development where he also heads up a team of leadership bloggers of which I’m proud to be included. I met Scott earlier this year as a co-participant in Harvard Kennedy School of Government’s program, The Art and Practice of Leadership Development.
- Laura Athavale Fitton of Pistachio Consulting writes a must read business blog called Great Presentations Mean Business. A sailor in a past life, Laura is also doing some interesting things on Twitter, the micro-blogging platform. Anyone interested in how business and personal communication technologies are rapidly evolving should follow her here.
Thanks again to Ed Brenegar of Leading Questions for tagging me and giving me the opportunity to introduce a few more people to Rocking the Boat.
Today (Oct. 13, 2007) John Shiffman of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that the federal prosecutor in the Independence Seaport Museum / John S. Carter case wants to send the ex-head of the museum up the river for a long time.
Assistant U.S. Attorney John J. Pease said that after the FBI raided his Philadelphia home, tipping him to the investigation, Carter unsuccessfully tried to swindle $1 million worth of life insurance from the museum. And, Pease said, after Carter pleaded guilty, he obstructed justice by lying to a probation officer and the IRS about his assets, including a time-share in Mexico, a 1934 Buick, and property in Maine and Nova Scotia.
“This defendant is without any moral compass whatsoever,” the prosecutor said. “John Carter is an offender who has yet to come to grips with the serious nature of his crimes. He is in a class by himself.”
Carter, who ran the nonprofit museum for 17 years, lived rent-free in its Society Hill townhouse while also being paid about $350,000 annually.
Here’s some sad but fascinating reading. (federal indictment)
Sentencing is scheduled for October 22nd.