If there’s any hard-hit industry that’s leading the way back, it’s diving – PADI Members in particular. The pandemic has forced many tough decisions for all of us. We didn’t have the visibility to know whether they were right or wrong when we made them. Now, as we begin to slowly emerge from the grips of the pandemic, we have the benefit and wisdom of hindsight to guide us forward into 2021.
Since the January-February case spike ended, global certifications are trending slowly upward. Throughout the pandemic, I’ve shared stories where PADI Members have kicked in a survivor mindset and stayed resiliently positive, and productive. Here are several more that might inspire you as well:
- PADI Instructor Martina Alvarez, who channeled her passion to connect local girls and women with the ocean, changing lives in the process.
- JB B&J Diving Centre, which organized a food drive to help more than 5,000 people affected by flooding in Malaysia.
- PADI Master Instructor Jun Betinol, a Lt. Colonel in the Philippines Army, who trained fellow service people for free so they, in turn, further their diving skills for promoting tourism, conservation and disaster response.
- Emperor Divers, Egypt, which is rewarding eight COVID Diver Heroes with free live-aboard trips for the differences they’ve made during the pandemic. Here’s the story of one of them.
There are stories like this from practically every country and culture. PADI employees and staff stand steadfastly with you and other dedicated PADI Members like these, focused on your recovery and success. Check out more stories of the PADI tribe’s tenacity and caring spirit here and here.
The PADI Regional Headquarters staff have developed several tools and initiatives you can leverage to drive your business and facilitate your recovery locally. Coupled with the rapidly expanding list of PADI eLearning programs, the PADI eLearning Marketing Toolkit helps you bolster your distance learning program to bring in students and fill classes, given the current limited travel access. The PADI Divemaster Toolkit and Become a PADI Pro event materials aim squarely at helping you fill your beginner through leadership level courses. PADI Dive Guides lets you show off your best local dive sites on PADI.com to reach more divers globally. As you’d expect, brand marketing and our Mission to create Torchbearers will continue to get divers and nondivers excited about PADI courses, and steer consumers specifically to you and your fellow PADI Members to sign up for training and engagement with you.
Unrestrained by travel restrictions, and requiring just a pool, many PADI Members are initiating the new PADI Mermaid Program. We have seen hundreds of PADI Instructors qualify as Mermaid Instructors. We have even seen local Mermaid training used for birthday parties by PADI dive shops. This training is a child of the pandemic and looks like it is growing up fast.
Overall, 2021 will be a restorative year for diving in general and PADI people in particular.
Thank you for your membership with PADI, your loyalty and your dedication to our Mission as an organization. Thank you for staying with us on the road less traveled. We truly are testament to the adage, “We are stronger together.”
President’s Desk, Drew Richardson, president message, straight talk livePADI Pros