PADI® Members continue to take action for the ocean, their businesses, the dive industry and their local communities – hope is certainly rising.
Around the world PADI Professionals, Dive Centers and Resorts are creating a more inclusive dive community through their adaptive diving training, showing that anyone can be a PADI Torchbearer and be empowered to help create balance between humanity and the ocean.
From establishing charity programs that help veterans and children with disabilities to rallying PADI Dive Centers around the country to take action for a more accessibility in diving, these PADI Members are championing adaptive diving training and inspiring us all.
1. Helping Veterans Heal: Patriot Scuba, United States
Patriot Scuba (S-19424) offers a robust adaptive diving training program that is specifically focused on helping injured veterans. The Virginia based program has been operating as a non-profit called Patriots for Disabled Divers since 2013, having successfully trained hundreds of adaptive divers who have suffered traumatic brain injuries or amputations. These veterans benefit from both the psychological healing aspects diving provides as well as an activity that allows them to feel both a sense of adventure and purpose.
2. Creating an Inclusive Dive Community: Scuba Diving for All, United Kingdom
Scuba Diving for All has been a registered charity in Ripon for the past 17 years and provide tuition for scuba diving to those with special needs. The founders, Yvonne and Archie Covell, wanted to make diving more accessible in their area and gift their students with the freedom of movement and feeling weightless. The program has been honored with the Queens Award for Voluntary Service with many students going on to complete their PADI Open Water Diver certification.
3. Making Underwater Adventure Accessible: Waterdogs Scuba, United States
As part of their Professional Preparatory Course, Waterdogs Scuba (S23534) include the Adaptive Support Diver training and have already certified 16 divers in Clarksville, Tennessee in this speciality. They also partner with the Dive Pirates Foundation and send both their PADI Professionals and adaptive diver students to the Florida Keys for customized diving experiences—ensuring that all their divers get a chance to seek adventure and save the ocean.
4. Training Freedivers and PADI Torchbearers: Eco Dive, Grenada
To ensure that anyone can become a PADI Freediver, Eco Dive (S-18878) conducted an adaptive Freediver static apnea training session for Natasha and Rachel Lambert—known as the Sailing Sisters. Natasha is a disabled sailor who is showing that people of all abilities can explore and protect the ocean. Eco Dive wrapped up the training session with the sisters by doing a beach clean up, showing her that she too can become a PADI Torchbearer and protect the planet both above and below the surface.
5. Advocating for Change All Around the Continent: Patricio Cartelli, Argentina
PADI Course Director Patricio Cartelli (#174610) is on a personal mission to make the diving community in South America more inclusive of those with both mental and physical disabilities. He is focused on encouraging more PADI Instructors in South America to take the PADI Adaptive Techniques Specialty Course and ensure that PADI Dive Centers cater to all needs.
6. Providing Hope to the Next Generation: Syed Abd Rahman, Malaysia
PADI IDC Staff Instructor Syed Abd Rahman (#302849) has been committed to teaching youth with disabilities for nearly three decades. He opened the PADI Five Star Dive Center Kids Scuba in Selangor as a way to ensure that the next generation has equal and inclusive opportunities to become scuba divers. He played a key role in helping to develop the PADI Adaptive Techniques Specialty course and has helped many divers with disabilities become PADI Open Water divers.
7. Providing Groundbreaking Training: Ernest Teo, Malaysia
PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer Ernest Teo (#482945) at Premier Marine and Scuba Center is also the program coordinator for Diveheart, a charity that is designed to give confidence to those with disabilities through adaptive diving and therapy. He has also worked alongside Syed Abd Rahman to train six medical professionals and rehabilitation physiotherapists from Kuching General Hospital through the PADI Adaptive Technique Specialty course—which was the first of its kind in the Borneo region of Malaysia.
Share Your Hope Rising Stories with #PADIPeople
There is hope rising everywhere. PADI will continue to amplify stories like these with fellow PADI Members and divers to inspire, excite and accelerate recovery by demonstrating the spirit of #PADIPeople around the world.
Share your own stories about how you are making a difference, and the better days that are possible right now through diving. Simply post descriptions, photos or videos to your social media channels, tagging PADI and #PADIPeople.
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