I received an email today from Abby Wood, education specialist at Save the Bay, with a link to her blog Abby’s Day on the Bay in which she posted about a program we recently put together with her organization and the Providence Maritime Heritage Foundation on the Continental Sloop Providence. Check it out.
ASTA Intern Matt wrote a great post on the TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE blog about the Sloop Providence’s participation in ASTA’s Tall Ships Youth Adventure program. I had a chance to sail with many of these young people during the program’s first week and even over that limited time period it was amazing to see the transformation take place and attitudes change. Read my previous posts here, here, here, here , here, here and here. ASTA Matt wrote:
I think I learned as much in those two weeks as the kids. Sure, I learned some things about sailing, but I learned a lot about working with youth. I learned that you really can make a difference by spending some time with the kids and giving them some attention. And most importantly and most surprisingly ,by giving them some responsibilities – something I remember getting too little of at that age.
I wholeheartedly agree with Matt. I also believe that creating a safe environment of structured freedom makes the adventure one of learning, maturing and fun.
A significant percentage of these teens expressed interest in sailing again next summer and I look forward to working with Middletown’s Public Schools, Substance Abuse Task Force and Police Department in making that happen.
Above photo by astamatt. For more great photos check out the ASTA TALL SHIPS CHALLENGE Flickr account.
I asked Sgt. Fred Bodington, a Middletown Rhode Island Police Officer who was instrumental in recruiting trainees for the Sloop Providence / ASTA Tall Ships Youth Adventure Program to write something about his experience sailing with kids over the past 2 weeks.
As a community police officer working in a low income housing complex I have the opportunity to see these cadets in their home environment. The transformation I see during the training is incredible. Although not across the board most of these kids are literally jumping at this opportunity. Each morning I have been boarding the bus with the kids and they all show the same “I don’t care indifference” when asked about the upcoming day. Their body language, however, tells a different story. One girl who complains about being tired and not getting to sleep is the first on the bus and just about ran me over getting there. The kids are seen walking around with pieces of line tying bowlines and making daisy chain necklaces and bracelets. We even hear them starting to use nautical terms as if they always had. I can just imagine the looks the teachers will give them when they go back to school and ask to go to the head.
On Monday, day 1 of the second week, we observed the same out of place feeling among the new kids that was displayed in the first week. This quickly went away as the crew and cadets who returned from the first week started to interact. Day 1 is hard on the kids who think that they are going to start sailing right away and it takes some time for them to grasp the fact they need to learn the ship before sailing her. Continue reading Sail training diary – Week 2 – Sailing with Kids (Guest Post)
Nice article in today’s Newport Daily News about the Continental Sloop Providence’s youth sail training program which I have been blogging about over the course of the past week. This 2 week program is a partnership with the Providence Maritime Heritage Foundation, Middletown Public Schools, Middletown Substance Abuse Task Force and the Middletown Police Depart.