This week the Piers Park Sailing Center (PPSC) released its annual report that highlights the neighborhood sailing program’s accomplishments and partnerships in 2019, as well its goals for 2020.
“As the year comes to a close, we are reflecting back on all of our programs in 2019 and looking ahead to our plans for the future,” said PPSC Executive Director Alex DeFronzo. “We are very proud to share our annual report. This year was a landmark year for Piers Park Sailing Center. We introduced new programs and strengthened our core continuum of services with over 2,750 youth, 550 disabled sailors, and 41 instructional staff taking the helm on Boston Harbor this year.”
DeFronzo said one of PPSC’s most exciting new partnerships formed in 2019 was with Camp Harbor View on Long Island in Boston Harbor. At this location, PPSC instructors provided sailing lessons for more than 200 Boston youth.
“We also introduced eight additional free community sailing and kayaking days in partnership with Save the Harbor / Save the Bay, The American City Coalition, and Harborkeepers,” said DeFronzo. “From Hyde Park to Orient Heights, residents across the city got on the harbor through PPSC’s programs.”
DeFronzo said PPSC’s home community of Eastie continued to grow in numbers last year with more than 800 Eastie youth participating in after school and summer programs.
“Many students that participated in Ocean Science After School or Climate NATURE (in partnership with Eastie Farm and Harborkeepers) during the winter joined us for summer programming this year – in part thanks to excellent new swimming instruction for East Boston youth provided by the East Boston YMCA,” said DeFronzo. “We also created or expanded partnerships with Revere Parks and Recreation, Elevate Youth, the Bedford VA Hospital, Boston Public Schools, and Triangle Inc. Working collaboratively magnifies impact and is a key value at Piers Park Sailing Center.”
In 2020 DeFronzo said PPSC looks forward to making the program even more accessible to families with financial need.
“This year about 80 percent of youth served reported family income below Boston’s Area Median Income,” he said. “We expect to be able to serve an additional 110 youth with financial need in Science of Sailing and Harbor Explorers programs in 2020 – and through legislation sponsored by Rep. Adrian Madaro, PPSC has secured $50,000 from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to achieve this goal.”
DeFronzo said PPSC has already begun strategic planning to guide its vision over the next three years and beyond.
“We are currently soliciting community feedback and we’re excited to share our guiding statement of values in this annual report,” said DeFronzo. “Thank you for making our work possible and we hope that you will look through the full report.”