Email This Page to a FriendPreview: Building Boats, Building Kids: Bronx High Schoolers Learn Life Skills from the Keel Up, by Sara Clemence
September 29, 2016
This is an article from “Good Old Boat” (a magazine we like a lot), written by Sara Clemence about an organization we really admire – Rocking the Boat. Good Old Boat and Sara have graciously allowed us to republish it for OCH members.
The South Bronx may be the last place one would associate with handmade wooden boats. Yet head to the industrial neighborhood of Hunts Point, hard by the world’s largest food distribution center, right next to the metal recycling facility, and down the street from the concrete supplier.
In a well-lit workshop you will find a klatch of local kids building boats piece by piece — cutting, bending, planking, sanding. And, as the motto of youth development organization Rocking the Boat goes, you’ll find that boats are building kids.
Rocking the Boat was founded by native New Yorker Adam Green. In 1996, while volunteering at a Harlem school, he saw how students were transformed by building a wooden dinghy together. A few years later, he established Rocking the Boat as an independent non-profit — and its impact has expanded dramatically since.