Each summer, Waypoint partners with the MA Department of Conservation and Recreation to offer accessible kayaking adventures in local state parks through the Universal Access Program. It’s been a busy, inspiring, funny, emotional, energetic summer filled with meeting hundreds of unique and amazing people and building new relationships. Over 200 people came kayaking in some of MA’s most beautiful lakes, ponds, sections of the Charles River, and Boston Harbor.
Participants were pushed this summer to step out of their comfort zone and try something courageous! Courage is often thought of as some heroic act, but we defined it as “strength of the heart.” And many times this summer it took strength of the heart to meet someone new and paddle a tandem kayak with them, learn a new skill, or just build self-efficacy through competence! We had a blast while learning ways to grow and overcome challenges! People captured these courageous moments by writing them on our Banner of Courage. Check out of few of our favorites below.
- I capsized my kayak!
- I learned how to paddle without a staff!
- I made new friends
- I went kayaking for the first time!
- I practiced setting realistic expectations
- I trusted people to lift me
- I asked for help from others!
- I learned a new skill!!
We’re so grateful we got to rub shoulders with individuals and groups that truly value those moments of real “life-learning.” We left each program filled with the hope and knowledge that there are such courageous people in this Greater Boston community. It was an awesome Summer of Courage!
Thank you to our groups! Thanks for coming kayaking with us! We were excited to partner with you! We hope the courage exhibited by your clients/students/participants/residents reverberates back into your program/classroom/community/home. Thanks Newton South Connections ABA, Boston University, Federation for Children with Special Needs’ Parent Support Group “Circle of Vietnamese Parents,” Assabet Valley Collaborative, Toward Independent Living and Learning (TILL) The Autism Initiative, TILL Group Homes, Burlington Recreation Department, and Specialized Housing, Inc.
Thank you to our sites! A special thanks to our new friends at Walden Pond! We couldn’t have asked for a more accommodating, thoughtful group of Mass DCR staff to support our programming. Our participants couldn’t have experienced the beauty of Walden without your guidance and help! Thanks also to Charles River Canoe and Kayak for access to your boats, gear, staff, and awesome sites. And Wayland Recreation Department for letting us use Wayland Town Beach, keeping your bathrooms open, and letting us use your beautiful boat launch!
Thank you to our volunteers! We had a record number of volunteers come out this summer! We felt the love! Thank you for your energy, flexibility, and eagerness to get involved. We are beyond thankful to have you be a part of our team this summer. A special shoutout to our corporate groups that went above and beyond to make “community” a tangible. Adobe and Silicon Valley Bank, thank you!
Thank you DCR Universal Access Program for lending all your financial support and expertise. Your staff are extensions of the Waypoint family! You’re making Massachusetts a better place!
7/14 with Waypoint’s Inclusive Adventure Club at Lake Cochituate in Wayland
7/17 Newton Connections ABA Kayaking at Walden Pond in Concord!
7/24 with Boston University at Walden Pond in Concord!
8/4 with Waypoint’s Inclusive Adventure Club on Boston Harbor from Malibu Beach, Dorchester. The wettest program of the year!
8/7 with Assabet Valley Collaborative at Walden Pond in Concord!
8/14 with Burlington Recreation Department at Walden Pond in Concord!
8/21 with Specialized Housing, Inc and TILL, Inc at Walden Pond in Concord!
Individuals and Families came kayaking too! It was a full summer of Open Enrollment programs!
7/17 at Walden Pond (unfortunately got rained out!)
7/24 at Walden Pond:
7/26 at Herter Park in Allston:
7/31 at Walden Pond:
8/7 at Walden Pond:
8/14 at Walden Pond:
8/16 at Lake Cochituate in Wayland:
8/21 at Walden Pond: