Many good causes merit our support. In the sea kayaking community, folks are especially generous with their time and money. This week’s post centers on a kayaker who has made it his mission to assist youth at risk. He’s putting in the time and is asking us to put in money. Let me introduce Alex Okerman, a Seattle-based paddler with a message. Here’s Alex, in his own words:
From June 2nd to June 6th, I’m planning a 5-day solo circumnavigation of the San Juan Island Archipelago to raise money for the YMCA’s annual Partners With Youth (PWY) campaign. Using sea kayaking as my medium, I intend to raise $2,000 that will go towards our overall branch campaign goal of $505,000. The money raised will go towards Y programs that strengthen our community by providing housing for homeless young adults, intervention and counseling for teens in crisis, and child care for children of low-income families.
Last year, I successfully completed a 38-mile circumnavigation of Orcas Island and raised over $1,200 dollars that directly benefited youth by building self confidence, developing leadership skills, and reinforcing positive values. After such a powerful experience, I’ve decided to attempt a bigger trip with a bigger financial goal. This year, my trip will be an 87-mile solo circumnavigation of the San Juan Islands, and I’ll attempt to raise $2,000 or more. During the trip, I will encounter strong currents, stretches of impenetrable coast line, wildlife, and large open water crossings. This particular route has been a dream of mine for a long time, and it has become even more exciting organizing it around the Y’s PWY campaign.
You can support the Partners With Youth campaign by donating money towards each mile I paddle. The total trip is 87 miles long. Any amount you can give is beneficial to the Y and the community we serve. To donate, call me at 206.271.1583, email me at email@example.com, or mail a check made out to the YMCA at 2100 24th Ave. S. #250 Seattle, WA 98144. Please address the envelope to Alex Okerman.
Thanks so much for your thoughtful consideration and support!
Alex Okerman, Young Adult Services Case Manager
Since children are the future, and every child deserves a chance to be healthy and strong, I plan to support Alex’s paddling endeavor and contribute to this worthy cause. I hope you will consider doing the same. -Eric