What Ice Storm? Indoor Pool Paddling!

Instruction for Inclusion had another great monthly program on Saturday. HarborLAB’s certified instructors and other volunteers dug a path out from our launch through snow plow piles on a day marked by freeing rain to teach basic paddling skills to a environmental educator Amelia Zaino and other friendly Bronxites. Shout out to Debby Kawalick for bringing people together!

Many thanks to sponsors TF Cornerstone and the LIC YMCA. Much gratitude to volunteers Tito Alvarado and Phillip Borbon for swooping in to help with the big dig on short notice, and Scott Wolpow for heading down early to catch such unforeseen challenges.

Instructors Dee Dee Maucher and Steven Chu, and soon-to-be instructor Scott Wolpow, were pleased with breakthroughs in their teaching techniques, which starts with a poolside orientation and culminates in side-by-side “learn as you go” couching. They’re excited to teach larger youth classes at Gantry Plaza State Park in the summer! The next pool session is April 15.

Our goal with Instruction for Inclusion is to build “confidence through competence” so that people who’ve historically been underrepresented in harbor life and STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) fields — especially communities of color — can participate in HarborLAB’s educational paddling tours. These outings are more challenging but more rewarding and FUN, landing on remote beaches and normally forbidden islands to photograph, remove plastics, seed native plants, and otherwise learn about environmental science through service.

Photos by Debby and Steven, and videos by Steven.

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