While many were watching the Super Bowl this past weekend, several of our families were involved in their own sports. The organization, Maine Adaptive Sports & Recreation, hosts a four-day winter sports retreat at Sunday River Ski Resort each winter during Super Bowl weekend. Wounded veterans and active duty service members are invited to attend with their families at no cost.
The group's Veterans/No Boundaries Program provides instruction in both winter and summer sports to any veteran with a physical disability.
The program provides the veterans with an amazing opportunity to build both confidence and physical strength. The weekend also gives families a place to bond together--and with other military families.
The winter weekend included skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling and more. And the results were quickly apparent. One surprised veteran shared:
“...this skiing is incredibly therapeutic. You really need to tell people how much it helps. I should be wiped out right now, but I’m buzzing like I downed a whole pot of coffee.”Another shared:
"What a wonderful place! I was able to go downhill skiing, cross country skiing, snow shoeing and even went on an amazing snow mobile ride. I am still amazed at how nice everyone was. I met a lot of really cool vets and I can't wait to go back. They invited me back for their summer program and for skiing next year. I got a lot of vestibular therapy out of the skiing and hadn't expected to do as well as I did. Very worthwhile! I can't thank you enough for sending me!"
Hope For The Warriors®, through our Outdoor Adventures Program,approached the group. We had several service members interested in pursuing the sport in a safe and therapeutic environment. The group happily invited these families and have since asked each to return. Hope For The Warriors® covered the cost of transportation; everything else was provided by Maine Adaptive Sports & Recreation.
It should also be shared that Maine Adaptive Sports & Recreation depends on the dedication of many volunteers. These dedicated individuals give hours of their time to make a difference in the lives of our military families. We look forward to working with this great group in the future!