Governor Larry Hogan’s Office on Service and Volunteerism has announced the 2019 honorees for exceptional contributions by Marylanders and Maryland organizations and Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating (CRAB) will be recognized as the top Nonprofit Volunteer Program.
CRAB President Brad LaTour commented, “Having Governor Hogan and his team recognize CRAB for the incredible service provided by our volunteers who bring the thrill and freedom of sailing to people with disabilities, wounded warriors, and children from at-risk communities is a true testament to their dedication and heartfelt service for our special guests.”
In 2019, CRAB provided sailing instruction to over 1,000 guests on its fleet of six Beneteau First 22A’s (A for adaptive). Guests, patients and clients from 26 nonprofit or governmental organizations in the region partnered with CRAB to learn how to sail on Chesapeake Bay. A few of the groups are the Maryland School for the Blind, Montgomery County Stroke Association, Muscular Dystrophy Association, Opportunity Builders Inc, Arundel Lodge, Washington VA Hospital, Wounded Warrior Program, and the Anne Arundel County and City of Annapolis Police Departments.
“This year, CRAB was pleased to have 119 volunteers serving as skippers, crew, and dock or support staff to ensure a safe and enjoyable sailing experience for our very appreciative guests in only a six-month season,” remarked Paul Bollinger, CRAB Executive Director. Bollinger added, “When you consider that 119 volunteers donated over 3,078 hours of their time in support of CRAB’s mission it makes you feel humble to lead such a wonderful organization.”
The planned CRAB Adaptive Boating Center, opening in 2020, will allow CRAB to expand its programs and fleet for more guests with disabilities throughout Maryland and the region in the near future.
The formal presentation ceremony was on Monday, October 21st at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts.