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Wintergreen Adaptive Sports

Wintergreen, VA

Amount Requested: $2,270 for DePaul Community Resources of Waynesboro Partnership

Mission: To improve the lives of people with disabilities through outdoor sport and recreation.  The sports we offer include skiing, snowboarding, canoeing, kayaking and golf.  The term “adaptive sports” refers to existing sports played by people with disabilities where the sport and its equipment are “adapted” to accommodate the participants’ disabilities. WAS offers a therapeutic community to people with disabilities. By providing a venue to participate, trained volunteer instructors and a vast assortment of adaptive sports equipment, we offer the therapeutic results of exercise – physical, emotional, and psychological – as well as friendship, inspiration, and encouragement to those with disabilities, their families and care-givers.

Constituents Served: WAS serves anyone of any age with any disability.  Our students have ranged in age from three to 88, and we give instruction to individuals with any cognitive, physical, or  sensory disability.  WAS has winter and summer events exclusively for servicemen and women  who were injured in the War on Terrorism (since 9-11-2001). During our 2014-15 fiscal year, WAS served 161 individual students with a wide range of disabilities. These 161 students received 600 ski or snowboard lessons and 10 canoe/kayak lessons from 109 volunteer instructors.  These totals include 96 associated family members and servicemen and women (“Wounded Warriors”)  who were wounded in service to their country.  Because WAS never turns away any student who cannot pay for our lessons, 217 of these lessons (36%) were provided at no cost, by scholarships and other subsidies. Included in these totals are five students from DePaul Community Services of Waynesboro who received 18 complementary ski lessons.

Program Overview: WAS seeks support to offset the costs it incurs to provide winter and summer sports lessons to students of DePaul Community Resources of Waynesboro.  (DePaul provides child and family services through foster care, adoption, independent living, and community based services.  They also provide developmental disabilities services through the provision of sponsored residential homes, group homes, respite and day support services.)

The majority of the requested support is to cover the projected costs of DePaul Community Services sending students to our Winter Program.  The cost of a single snow sport or boating lesson to WAS is $267.  Subsidizing all lessons,  WAS  charges only $100 for a full-day of ski or snowboard instruction (including equipment and lift ticket) and $45 for a full-day of canoe or kayak instruction (including a canoe or kayak, vest, and helmet).

WAS does not charge any students who are unable to pay for its services.  Last year, we offered 217 free sessions, or 36% of all our lessons.  These scholarships, including those WAS provided the students of DePaul Community Resources of Waynesboro, were enabled by generous donations from individual contributors and grants by organizations such as CFCBR.

Grant support in 2015 allowed DePaul Community Resources of Waynesboro to send five students to WAS for 18 ski lessons.

Current Operating Budget: $175,000

Program Budget: $2,270

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