Thanks to our trips out on the lake, I feel a very special connection to Lake Erie and boating, in general. I also think that it taught us some valuable life lessons such as respect for water life, self reliance and patience. When a friend of mine sent me an email about WHISTLE Education and the WHiskey ISland To Lake Erie program I was beside myself with just how cool this initiative is and could not wait to share the details.
WHISTLE Education was founded in 2005 by Mirek Posedel with his two young daughters Stephanie and Hannah – who are now 5th and 7th graders. The WHISTLE program provides intercity kids the opportunity to build a boat and take it out on the lake - all while teaching the kids about our greatest natural resource, Lake Erie, and to inspire them to understand the importance of preserving our environment. They. get. to. build. a. boat!
Mirek is a long time sailor, President of Sterling Services of Cleveland and lives in my hometown. He gives credit to Dan Moore, of the Wendy Park Foundation, for helping to make this organization successful, as well as lending Wendy Park on Whiskey Island to the organization and to the kids so they have a place to build their boat.
They can not make this a success though with out the help of their skilled volunteer sailor and carpenters who will teach 16 students from E prep School on E 36th street, as well as students from the Sierra Club’s Inner city Outings group who where once refugees from Bhutan and lived in camps in Nepal before coming to America.
Of course, none of this can be accomplished with out additional help from businesses and individuals. They are also looking for corporate sponsors to not only donate funds, but, offer their time building the boats, bringing lunch for the students and volunteers to speak with the students about business and their experiences growing their businesses.
Whistle will start, tomorrow, July 26 and run through August 5 ( 9AM -3PM Monday – Friday). It is open to the public and families are invited to drop in to watch, volunteer and learn at the WHISTLE Program. You will find them hard at work by the big white tent near the beach at Wendy Park on Whiskey Island.
For more information and to donate please contact: Mirek Posedel , 216 375-3557, Whistleboats@gmail.com
All photos are from The Cleveland Colectivo who gave them a grant in 2007 to purchase materials for that year.