At Power To Be, we strive to help our community create new memories out in nature. Whether those memories are made on the waves or in the forest, we believe that everyone belongs in nature. No matter the physical, cognitive, social or financial barrier, we know that everyone in our community deserves to experience all that the outdoors has to offer.
Throughout the years, we have worked hard to improve our programs to make them more accessible. We cater these programs to our participants’ needs and desires and consistently discover new ways to support them in reaching their goals. By being curious, exploring, and asking questions, we have found many different kinds of adaptive equipment to support our participants in accessing nature and experiencing the magic of the outdoors.
For our water programs, we have found a few handy pieces of equipment. Our canoe paddle aid allows anyone to paddle our 12-passenger canoe, thanks to two hinges that rotate a full 360 degrees. This aid helps us to move the paddles in and out of the water. On paddleboard programs, we offer inflatable stabilizers and seats for some of our boards for participants who want to try but need extra support. For kayaking, we use kayak paddle aids that mount at the front of our double kayaks. These allow the user to practice standard kayak paddle strokes without having to hold the weight of a paddle. For single kayaks, we use pontoons, paddle assists, and a removable lateral support, which allows for more independence. Lastly, to get our participants onto the water, we use transfer benches! Our staff and volunteers use them as a comfortable midway to get participants in and out of vessels because they are easily adjustable. We also have adaptive seats, gripping aids, paddling gloves, and foamies to make our participants’ experiences on the water as smooth as possible.
It doesn’t stop there. For our land programs, we have also built lots of equipment to make our programs accessible. Our TrailRider is a lightweight, one-wheeled device that can be used on hikes in all weather and terrain. It is powered by our staff and volunteers and helps us to get our participants out on the trails! For climbing programs, we use a 3:1 pulley system to allow our participants to reach new heights. It allows Power To Be staff and volunteers to take some of the weight off the participant and assist in supporting them up the wall. We also use a pull-up bar as a climbing assist for participants so they can get up a climbing wall at their own pace. Using the bar to pull themselves up, the climber is supported by a full body harness, allowing them to sit upright.