The DSAA offers our members with the opportunity to sail independently on the Glenmore Reservoir in any of our accessible sailboats: Martin16s, Sonars, or Access Dinghies. Sailing is unique in that it allows our members the chance to leave their disability at the dock, and experience independence and freedom in a way that would otherwise not be available. While learning to sail or for a therapeutic and rehabilitative outing where the member is not able to sail on their own, DSAA provides independent sailing with a qualified volunteer sailing companion.
The DSAA staff will ensure the boat and any required adaptive equipment is ready for sailing prior to the outing and assist in transferring people in and out of the boat. After the sailing session the staff will ensure the boats are de-rigged and stored.
LEARN TO SAIL
The DSAA offers Sail Canada certified “Learn to Sail” programs where participants can obtain their CANSail certification, utilizing the DSAA’s accessible boats. The CANSail program provides our members with a solid foundation of sailing knowledge, allowing them to safely sail independently.
The DSAA will arrange for a qualified instructor for the course, either a member of our staff or a contract instructor. Our Program Coordinators will ensure the sailboats and any adaptive equipment, are setup and assist in transferring people in and out of the boats. After the sailing has concluded the DSAA staff will ensure the boats are de-rigged and stored. As required to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience, the DSAA will provide at least one qualified volunteer sailing companion per vessel to assist in controlling and docking the boat.
LEARN to race
After learning how to sail independently some of our members choose to advance their knowledge and self-development by participating in friendly racing. The DSAA supports these members by participating in the “Wednesday Night Racing” series, hosted by the Glenmore Yacht Club on the Glenmore Reservoir. There are no pre-requisites to participate in this event and is open to our members of all sailing ability.
For this event the DSAA staff will ensure the boat and any required adaptive equipment is ready for sailing prior to the outing and assist in transferring people in and out of the boat. After the races the staff will ensure the boats are de-rigged and stored. If the member is new to racing and not comfortable on their own the DSAA provides the sailor with a qualified volunteer sailing companion to ensure they have a positive and enjoyable experience.
Our Outreach Program takes our boats on the road, to venues where local disabled individual and volunteer enthusiasm combine to bring accessible sailing to a community. When groups representing people with disabilities invite us to an outreach location, DSAA staff and volunteers transport boats and equipment to an accessible location to share the experience of sailing with other members of the disabled community.
Previously we have worked with the Canadian Paraplegic Association Edmonton Chapter and the Wabamun Sailing Club to hold Outreach Programs on Lake Wabamun, 65 km west of Edmonton. The DSAA provided a group of 2-3 individuals, consisting of volunteers and staff, to transport our boats (2 Martin16s and 2 Access Dinghies) and accessible equipment to Lake Wabamun. The staff and volunteers then ensured the boats and any required adaptive equipment was ready for the new sailors, assisted in loading and unloading the participants, and de-rigged the boats after the event. Our volunteers and Wabamun Sailing Club provided qualified sailing companions for the new sailors to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.
The Outreach Program is normally held on a weekend and we’ve previously been to Lake Wabamun and Pine Lake, 39km southeast of Red Deer. The DSAA only charges the cost of fuel and accommodation back to the organizing group. We normally see approximately 20 new sailors at each outreach