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April 26, 2010

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April 26, 2010

Piers Park is an absolutely remarkable place. To me, Piers Park is all about accessibility. The design of the space and of the programs make it possible for a variety of non-traditional sailors to savor the harbor. Disabled sailors come to Piers Park to really sail, not just to be sailed around. Children and adolescents come to Piers Park to learn and grow, not just for a pleasant summer activity. The staff at Piers Park seems to be always growing themselves and are constantly looking out for ways to better serve their communities. It's a great place, worthy of support...don't miss out on any chance to be part of this!

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

watching the youth staff grow as leaders over the course of the summer.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

dedicated, deeply caring and really fun to hang around with.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

April 20, 2010

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April 20, 2010

PPSCis different from other sailing programs due to the fact that it is all inclusive, its amazing to see kids with disabilities of all sorts sailing. My daughter has been involved with other sailing programs in the city and has learned more in two summer sessions at PPSC than any other program. They really teach, and the kids really learn. Amazing program !!!!

The Great!

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

watching my daughter place in a sailing race week

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

any experience that gives my daughter the ability to grow

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

experienced, personable, and all inclusive

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

April 18, 2010

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April 18, 2010

Nearly 40 years experience in sailing and maintaining sailboats from 10-44 feet and teaching my children and others to sail.

The Great!

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

working with the physically and mentally challenged sailors at Piers Park. In addition I work with the staff to plan and carry out activities to serve the Adaptive Sailing Membership.

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the enthusiasm, imagination, knowledge and determination of the members of the Adaptive Sailing committee.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

"disabled" to a degree and two of the committee members are quadriplegic and one is paraplegic. The paraplegic member is a Gold Medal Winner in Sailing at the Paralympic Games in Beijing, China.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

develop and test more equipment to help more disabled people to participate in sailing. Hire professional staff to expand the adaptive programs. Custom rig 2 or three more sailboats. Build a new office to accommodate the disabled staff members.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

April 17, 2010

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April 17, 2010

I've sailed with Piers Park Sailing for several years and delight in the wonderful youth they serve. Piers Park Sailing does more than just introduce at-risk kids to a sport and a world out on the water that they might never experience otherwise - Piers Park Sailing creates young leaders. The kids who learn to sail at Piers Park come back to teach others. Often they progress to study maritime trades, ecology or the environment.

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Knowing that my enjoyment of sailing in Boston Harbor and the Harbor Islands National Park supports the non-profit mission of Piers Park Sailing to bring sailing to at-risk Boston youth and to create stronger, smarter young people.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Bring sailing, sport, leadership and a love of the outdoors to every Boston youth.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

April 17, 2010

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April 17, 2010

Our boat, Averisera, is moored at one of the moorings that Piers Park provides for local boaters and visitors to Boston Harbor. We interact with the youth and folk that Piers Park serves, whenever we go down to sail in our beautiful harbor. We have met young people doing sample collections and exploration activities on the dock, and invited them onto our boat, so they can see what a cruising/sailing vessel is like. When we dinghy out to our mooring, we observe the members who use the adaptive facilities, like the lift for wheelchair-bound people. It has been a humbling and uplifting experience, sharing the harbor with the population that Piers Park serves. This is an amazing place!

Photos

The Great!

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

our daily interactions coming and going from our mooring.

Ways to make it better...

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

make sure it had sufficient funding to serve the maximum number of youth and folks in need of adaptive sailing equipment.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the impromptu nature of our interactions with people of all abilities.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

enthusiastic and committed.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

change the world.

Ways to make it better...

more folk were able to participate. Probably a funding or budgeting constraint.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Funding and capacity.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

April 17, 2010

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April 17, 2010

Piers Park Sailing Center brought me up since I was just 10 years old. In the Fall of 2000 I started sailing with Piers Park. I was so impressed and happy with them that I decided to stay with them and do all of their spring, summer and fall sailing sessions. At the age of 15 I became a future leader, training to become a sailing instructor. Now as a cadet at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy, I still teach sailing to the youth and underprivileged of the city. I am giving back to a place that gave me so much.

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If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Expand their fleet of boats and offer much more to the community. We are small and serve as many people as we can. We just wish we could help more!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

April 16, 2010

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April 16, 2010

I had 15 years of sailing experience prior to joining Piers Park Sailing Center in 2007. PPCS has proved to me that disabled people can sail. In my prior life, I was an Outward Bound Instructor. PPSC has brought out the confidence I have in my ability. I highly recommend sailing as a life-long sport. The boats and staff at PPSC are extraordinary. The boats are easy to sail and the staff find ways to help people have a great time.

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If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

buy new boats.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

April 16, 2010

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April 16, 2010

I have been living in East Boston for nearly two years, and I am convinced that there is no other community like this in the world. The success of the Piers Park Sailing Center is exemplified in the stories of many of its participants, but more importantly, its mere existence is a source of pride for the people of this neighborhood. For years, this organization has penetrated the hearts and souls of every person living in the region, and now for the first time, PPSC is gaining international recognition for its programs that provide access, recreation and therapy for people with disabilities. Many of us here in East Boston count down the days until the start of the season. Hundreds of children and adults of all abilities wait eagerly for the boats to hit the water each spring. Truthfully though, the profound impact of this program stretches far beyond sailing. It fosters hope, confidence and community in a neighborhood that would otherwise be lost. Thanks PPSC!

Ways to make it better...

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

More feedback...

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Knowledgeable, welcoming, and organized.

Ways to make it better...

Its not secret that an organization like PPSC has a significant amount of overhead. Maintaining a fleet of sailboats is an expensive task. However, further focus on facilities and equipment would be at the top of my list.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

April 16, 2010

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April 16, 2010

Last year I learned to sail at PPSC, and it was a great experience. Our sailing coach Santiago grew up sailing at Piers Park and is currently attending Mass Maritime, a true story of how a nonprofit can help children throughout their childhood and give them valuable skills - not just sailing, but discipline, responsibility and respect for our natural resources. PPSC not only serves the inner city youth of Boston, but also the disabled. It was a joy and pleasure visiting the sailing center and seeing how empowering sailing on your own can be for those who may not have full mobility on land. PPSC is truly a great nonprofit.

The Great!

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

learning how to sail.

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

meeting people from the community - everyone - kids, disabled, young adults, seasoned sails.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

April 16, 2010

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April 16, 2010

I am an attorney, and present president of Piers Project Advisory Committee, Inc., a non profit that advises Massachusetts Port Authority on the Maintenance and Security of Piers Park East Boston where the PPSC is located. The sailing program is now in the best condition both fiscally and programatically since its inception, almost 15 years ago. Along the way, there have been all the problems that might be expected in a small, community-based program. These include nepotism and blatant financial mismanagement which threatened the continued viability of this valuable resource. Fortunately for our community, the last two directors, Ms. Cuzzi and Mat Rosa have deployed both skill and integrity to achieve the high level of performance that realize the potential that this program always had. The program is strategically located on Boston Harbor with a unique adaptability build out that offers the sailing experience to many who would otherwise be unable to participate in sailing activity. It is impossible for me to describe the value that this program contributes to the fabric of our community. The development opportunities for our young people are simply unmatched and unmatchable by programs that lack the physical and human resources available at Piers Park Sailing. In my opinion, this program is uniquely deserving of the wholehearted support they receive from their communities. Robert F. Strelitz

The Great!

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

Please see my comments at " experience"

Ways to make it better...

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

I would intensify efforts to link up with other, similar sailing organizations

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The sincerity and helpful attitude of staff and personnel.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Young, enthusiastic, and unfailingly helpful and pleasant.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Serve even more young people at a particularly significant time in their lives.

Ways to make it better...

The Sailing Center needs space to store and repair boats in the off-season.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Some consider sailing to be an elitist, somewhat frivolous activity. This misperception must be corrected at every opportunity.

One thing I'd also say is that...

Viva Piers Park Sailing!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

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