Paddling memories from North Vancouver's Cates Park

With support from donors, we were fortunate enough to have the use of a new program vehicle, as well as a beautifully refurbished kayak trailer, allowing us to bring our kayaks anywhere we choose. We decided that Cates Park in North Vancouver would make a lovely launching area for the majority of our kayaking programs.

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Adaptive kayaking is one of our trademark outdoor-based activities at Power To Be in Vancouver. Each summer, individuals access our kayaking programs through our Open Adventure program or through community groups that they are a part of. Kayaking is a wonderfully accessible activity, one that allows nearly anyone, no matter what barriers they face, to get out and enjoy the natural environment.

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Launching out of Cates Park, our participants are able to enjoy the natural sights and sounds of Indian Arm, often encountering bird and sea life such as jellyfish, cormorants, great blue herons, purple sea stars, and harbor seals. By accessing such amazing nature so close to our doorstop and learning cool facts from other group members, participants are able to connect with the natural world, in turn increasing their understanding and care for it.

Each kayaking program starts and ends in much the same way, with an opening and closing circle. Participants, staff, volunteers and family members have a chance to share their name, and answer a question of the day, with a reflective question at the end of the program. In this way, social networks are strengthened, as participants have an opportunity to get to know others in the group.

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The Power To Be Vancouver team wants to send a huge thank you out to everyone who has helped make the 2015 kayaking season a wonderful success: volunteers, participants, family members, community groups, and donors. We are already looking forward to getting back on the water in 2016!

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If you are curious to learn more about this or other programs, or would like more information on how to get involved with Power To Be please reach out to the Vancouver team.

– Story shared by Alanna Ray, Community Development Coordinator