I am certain that I am living the quality of life that I am living for one reason alone: my passion for skiing.
Coming from a middle class family, it was a sport that if I wanted to do it I would need to find a way to get up the hill, a way to buy a ticket, and a means to having good winter gear. Luckily, my parents helped on the clothing and equipment part, but the rest was up to me. To make it happen, I got a job at 12 at the local ski area and bummed rides from fellow employees or family friends that were heading to the mountain. It was a fabulous experience for me, it helped me grow as a person; learning a strong work ethic, independence, reliance on self, and above all a means to learning self-love that stopped me from being attracted to a life that would of left me in whole-lotta trouble, in jail or dead.
So when I look back upon my 33 years of skiing, I am so grateful for what the sport brought into my life. But I am sad also…because I know that there are thousands of children that could also have an access to a positive outlet, yet are left behind due to lack of cash.
It is no joke that skiing is one of the most expensive sports around, but there is a great non-profit based out of Lake Tahoe that is helping youth connect with a soul sport for free…SkiDUCK. I had an inspiring interview with founder, Clint Lunde, awhile back. Since that chat, the organization has gotten over 200 kids on the slopes.
With all certainty, SkiDUCK will positively affect the life of at least one child, making their life much better for the long term.
Here’s a video from a recent event they had at Tahoe Donner:
If you live in California and would like to get involved, SkiDUCK is always looking for volunteers, helpful funding or winter gear. For those that can share some time on the hill, SkiDUCK will give you a free lift ticket in gratitude for your collaboration in helping underprivileged children feel the wonder and stoked-ness of being out in the mountains.
Contact SkiDUCK for more information.
See ya on the hill!