Challenged America and the VA Summer Sports Clinic

They are back!  Over 100 recently injured and disabled veterans are descending on San Diego this weekend for a week of overcoming and competing.

Over 70 Challenged America volunteers will be on hand at the San Diego Marriott Marina with our fleet of Martin 16, specially designed and equipped for disabled sailors.

Most of the disabled veterans, who have never sailed before, will learn to handle our boats and race, twice a day.

If you have never attended the clinic, let me tell you, these men and women are truly inspiring.  You think you have been dealt a raw deal, come and watch them and you will rethink your definition of disabled.

In a matter of a few hours, they will learn to sail and actually sail our boats (our companion sailors are there just for safety and coaching) and let me tell you, these veterans are tough and extremely competitive.

For us, volunteers, it’s quite an experience, for most of us, it’s the highlight of the year.  It’s hard to describe the feeling you get when you meet them, watch them, watch the transformation when they get in the boats and discover that they can sail and handle the boats by themselves and compete.

Watching the smiles on their faces when they are on the water and come back to the docks is truly priceless.

For us, it’s a privilege to volunteer with those who served, their family and caregivers and paid a high price.

Take a look at last year’s photos and videos:


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