Guest Blog by Debra Frenkel, Founder/Executive Director, Freedom Waters Foundation:
Imagine a young 15-year-old girl in a wheelchair with a ventilator, oxygen, and all other sorts of emergency equipment. She is on a boat for the first time with a huge smile across her face. Her mother next to her is overwhelmed with joy as her daughter, who she thought could never experience being on the water, is now on a boat with the sun on her face and smiling with excitement. Image the same girl returning the following year for her “Sweet 16” birthday being greeted by dolphins as soon as she is rolled to the railing. She glows with happiness and joy from all the wonderful sensations.
That is just one example of the many experiences Pure Naples has afforded local community members with special needs and their families by generously donating the use of their vessel, the Double Sunshine, and her crew, while partnering with Freedom Waters Foundation (FWF)! Freedom Waters Foundation is a local non-profit that provides boating opportunities and marine related activities for people with disabilities, life threatening illnesses, youth at risk and others with special needs. Pure Naples has made it extremely easy for Freedom Waters Foundation to carry out its mission in larger numbers by offering the use of the Double Sunshine since 2008.
Pure Naples has been a valued and exceptional partner of Freedom Waters Foundation for a number of years and, without hesitation, always says yes when asked if FWF can bring out a group; sometimes the groups are just a few and sometimes half the boat is filled. Groups served in partnership with Pure Naples and FWF have included: children and adults with cancer, schools for children with autism, therapeutic day camps, camps with hearing for the hearing impaired, visually impaired adults and children, developmentally delayed adults, disabled senior living residents, and individual families with special needs children.
From the owners, office staff, Captains and crew, Pure Naples offers pure joy giving from pure heart. Freedom Waters Foundation is immensely grateful for this incredible partnership in serving others in the community who may not otherwise have the opportunity to get out and enjoy the water and all the therapeutic affects that nature provides.