Diveheart Foundation

Rating: 4.99 stars   79 reviews

Address:

900 Ogden Ave #274 Downers Grove IL 60515 USA

Mission:

Diveheart helps build confidence and independence in children, adults and veterans with disabilities through the sport of scuba diving. The DIVEHEART VISION: It is our hope to bring the disabled dive industry up to the level of the disabled ski industry by 2020. For example: fifty or more years ago if an individual in a wheelchair rolled up to a ski resort in Colorado and wanted to downhill ski, there were no opportunities. Today, many ski resorts and operators around the world cater to skiers with disabilities, giving them the opportunity to experience the excitement of Alpine skiing. We believe that as individuals with disabilities discover that scuba diving is an activity that they can easily participate in, the tide will rise and the growing demand will necessitate that dive retailers, manufacturers, instructors, operators and resorts recognize and meet the need.

Programs:

Diveheart has programs for children, adults and veterans with disabilities.

2015 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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More Info

www.diveheart.org

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Reviews for Diveheart Foundation

Rating: 5 stars  

My son is autistic. Dive Heart has helped him develop in ways that I could not have done myself. Thank You to all the fine Dive Heart volunteers for your loving care that you have shared to my family.

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

The people at Diveheart (staff and volunteers) are truly amazing! The work they do to assist folks with challenges is second to none. A wonderful organization with an outstanding mission. I'd give them 10 stars if I could.

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

Back in April I lost my right leg when I was ran over by a car while changing my tire. My father took me on a vacation to pompano beach Florida to see relatives and for me to dive again. Divehearts set me up with Nikole from force-e and Divehearts. We went on a few dives as it was the first time back in the water since the accident. Nikole is an exceptional person and very professional. I hope everyone that gets help from your organization has a person like Nikole. I was very comfortable once I was in the water and she was going at my speed, I didn't have to try and keep up with her. She took some awesome pictures and posted them for me then once I was home she sent me a video she made while we were diving as a surprise that I was unaware that she was making. I was to say thank you to you organization for all the help you give people by having volunteers that are willing to give the time and effort to help people with disabilities

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

When my daughter wanted to get her Open Water certification a local dive shop didn't feel comfortable training her because of her limb difference. - they referred us to Diveheart, an organization I had never heard of previously. The Diveheart team was amazing in how they worked with my daughter to achieve her OW certification. This gave her a sense of accomplishment in an area she had struggled and improved her self-esteem. I've observed their work on many occasions - the staff and volunteers are truly dedicated to their cause and care deeply about the people they assist through Diveheart.

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

We found out about Diveheart through my dad who saw the WGN special. My son and I attended one of their picnics and my 13 year old was able to experiencing diving. He was diagnosed with autism when he was 2yr. He has always loved swimming so to discover diving was simply amazing. He came out of the water with the biggest grin I have ever seen. if it wasn't for Diveheart I would still be searching for activities that my son could enjoy.

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

Our 22 year old son Matthew has cerebral palsy and is in a wheelchair. During the 2013-14 school year, Matthew attended the Illinois Center for Rehabilitation and Education (ICRE) in Chicago. While at ICRE Matthew was introduced to Diveheart and scuba diving. He was apprehensive at first but decided to give it a try. With the patient help of Jim Elliott of Diveheart and Ron Rispoli of ICRE, Matthew was successful underwater in the pool at ICRE. We then learned that Ron Rispoli was planning an ICRE/Diveheart diving trip to Key Largo in July. We decided to sign the whole family up for the trip and my 20 year old son Jake and I also signed up to learn how to dive. Diveheart arranged several training sessions for all three of us as well as online training to become certified divers. Our family was now looking forward to an exciting vacation adventure and couldn't wait for July to get here. We ended up having our best vacation experience of all time. Our trip started off with a training dive off the beach at Pennekamp State Park. The next three days we spent on the boat with the Rainbow Reef Dive Center in Key Largo. The folks at Rainbow Reef went above and beyond in every way, getting four adults in wheelchairs on and off the boat and safely into and out of the water. The weather and diving was great all four days and we couldn't have asked for more (I give thanks and praise to God for that. I know he was with us on this trip). Because of Jim Elliott and Ron Rispoli, our son Matthew now has the confidence to do something we never even thought possible. We are now a scuba diving family, although we still have to get Mom Margaret under water. There are so many bad things in our world, but also more good things. We need to support people like Jim Elliot and groups like Diveheart. They are truly angels on earth.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

...give them all the money they need to make their dreams a reality.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

I found out about about diveheart through the rehabilation Institute of Chicago. I have Cerebral Palsy but am always looking for activities that will challenge me. When I first met Diveheart, they were very professional, knowledgeable and fun to work with. I had such a blast with them!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

Our 11-year-old son Matthew has cerebral palsy and is very limited in the physical activities in which he can participate. The first time we went to a Diveheart event Matthew was pretty nervous since he had never scubaed before and wasn't sure what to expect. The volunteers were incredibly nice and they made Matthew feel comfortable immediately. In no time he was underwater and loving it! Gravity is his enemy but underwater he can be free to move around just like everybody else. We had done quite a bit of research on Diveheart before we went to the event and we had very high expectations. Those expectations weren't only met--they were exceeded.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

 
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Role: Client Served
Rating: 5 stars  

Diveheart has served my son who has autism well over the years. The volunteers are all super kind and generous with their time. They have helped my him to recognize that he can accomplish something he has never tried before. I will not forget how it brought happy tears to my eyes when he did make a dive under the water in a local swimming pool. Awesome work, Diveheart! You have helped raise my son's self-esteem in a fun way.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

Diveheart has opened up a brand new world for my twin sons with Autism. Both boys are avid swimmers and are on a summer swim team, but Diveheart has shown them that moving slowly in the water allows you to see and experience so much more. My sons said that "breathing underwater is like being a fish and not having to come up for air". The Diveheart volunteers are caring, supportive and I felt completely at ease watching them in the water. Thank you to Jim and the whole Diveheart organization for offering "another way to share our beautiful planet".

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Seeing my boys smiling faces when they accomplished their first scuba learning experience.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

No changes needed. Keep up the fantastic and life changing work.

 
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