TISC received a HUGE recognition from US Sailing at their National Symposium held in Austin, TX last month. Our team was recognized for “their significant efforts in creating access to the water for thousands of SF Bay youth and adults”.
This year’s award was extra special as it was recently renamed in honor of Mr. John B. “Jim” Kilroy, Sr. While Mr. Kilroy had much success in his life – a prominent California real estate developer who was also a champion yachtsman and renowned philanthropist – the success he most cherished was sharing the sport he loved with youth who may not otherwise have the opportunity to sail. He lived by his mother’s philosophy, “If successful, you carry others with you for the benefit of mankind.”
At the risk of sounding over-dramatic, this is a BIG DEAL! And while I admit to being completely non-objective, this award was WELL DESERVED. TISC was singled out for making “notable contributions in promoting public access sailing by identifying and actively including people who would normally have no access to sailing. In 2016 alone, 3,600 children, youth and adults sailed, paddled or kayaked on Clipper Cove in San Francisco Bay through TISC programs.”
Two recent TISC initiatives, both enabled by generous grants from the St. Francis Sailing Foundation, were highlighted for special attention. The development of a high school racing team for Oakland’s Envision Academy was launched in partnership with OCSC Sailing School.
And Set Sail Learn, a one-day exploration trip for San Francisco fourth graders that incorporates sailing into a hands-on STEM curriculum, fosters learning and a love for San Francisco Bay.
So “thumbs up” for our full-time staff, summer instructors, volunteers, and tenants. And especially to our sponsors, grantors and many individual donors. Without YOUR time, effort and financial support we would never have been able to provide these sailors, kayakers and paddlers with life changing opportunities. YOU have enabled so many to touch the Bay, grab seaweed in their hands, learn about the history and power of the wind and become nature advocates and caretakers for decades to come. Many with TISC-provided scholarships.
YOU should feel part ownership in the 2016 US Sailing “Jim Kilroy Outstanding Outreach & Inclusion Award.
If TISC had not “reached out and brought in” over the last six years, many of the 16,000 smiles that lit up Clipper Cove would not have happened. And speaking of Clipper Cove, none of these smiles would be possible without the star of our show- Clipper Cove. Here’s a bit of history plus additional photos of “The Cove”.
Below we’ve captured the wide range of Bay Area residents TISC reached out to and the 2016 programs that drew them in.
1,317 Fourth graders from 35 San Francisco Public Schools attended one of the 161 Set Sail Learn STEM experiential learning classes provided at no charge by TISC. This unique and innovative program, designed to meet California Core standards, is a one-day exploration trip incorporating curriculum-aligned science and math learning, together with sailing on San Francisco Bay.
Over 4,200 students from 35 SFUSD schools attended one of 161 classes since the first class in 2013.
432 youth and teens participated in spring, summer and fall sailing / adaptive lessons. TISC uses a 5-level progression to teach life lessons including goal setting, communications teamwork and leadership while instilling feelings of respect, self-esteem and self-reliance in its students.
Over half of these students received scholarships to enable them to participate in these week-long programs. Ages range from 6 year-old “harbor seals” to youth racers and on to junior instructors who return to TISC as full instructors.
Their “Co-Able” sailing lessons, run in partnership with the Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors, team youth with physical or emotional disabilities with partners with complimentary or no disabilities; together both can learn the joys of independent sailing.
431 youth participated in orientation and after-school “first sails”. TISC has reached out to nearly 60 San Francisco organizations who work with at-risk youth to provide them with outdoor activities, role models and an opportunity to learn about and enjoy the bay. Most participants are on scholarship, and many students return for additional classes.
884 adults, many with their families, attended one or more Community Sailing activity hosted by TISC. Opening day in the spring, offering free sailing, kayaking and paddle boarding, as well as land-based games, crafts and life jackets, is by far the largest single event sponsored by TISC.
The local V15 fleet races on Clipper Cove as well and promote “last to first” races that encourage youth to crew with experienced racers who are then awarded bonus points for providing budding racers the opportunity to participate in Thursday night racing on Clipper Cove. Adult keelboat classes, the newly formed Social Sailing League and the recently launched adult dinghy racing classes round out the TISC adult programs.
495 high school and college racers, coaches and parents practiced or raced on Clipper Cove which provides a unique combination of protected, current-free water with good winds and access to docks.
Most notably TISC teamed with OCSC in 2014 to launch a high school racing team which provided students from Envision Academy, in Oakland, with the opportunity to learn to swim, sail and race. The Academy has a tremendous track record for placing their seniors in college. The Envision Academy Sailing Team (E*A*S*T) provides not only life skills, but also an extra boost and racing experience these young sailors can take with them to college – a big plus for making new friends and expanding their secondary school experience. And to provide these students with additional incentive as well as social connections to stay in school.
The photos above are just a few of the many ways TISC creates ambassadors for Mother Nature and advocates for clean oceans and a sustainable environment. Our outreach to Bay area youth and adults extends well beyond the over-18,000 of smiles we’ve generated in just the last six years alone.
Regards from On The Cove, Dave G
In the wake:
- The TISC News Release with additional details is HERE.
- You can Read the St. Francis Sailing Foundation News Release.
- Jim Kilroy was remembered by Scuttlebutt Sailing News
- Jim Kilroy’s obituary in the New York Times included many unique and inspiring philosophies taken from his decades of successful sailing as well as his business successes. The one facet of his philosophy that really struck home with me was: “Mr. Kilroy was known for carrying an all-amateur crew that, at his insistence, would sail with him full-time for no more than three years. Afterward, the young sailors, numbering more than 600 over the years, were meant to pursue their own careers”.