From L-R: The “Impossible Dream” sailing away on May 30 and Harry Horgan, President and Co-Founder of Shake-A-Leg Miam, being interviewed by the press. Photo by Griselle Marino /Office of Community Advocacy
MIAMI – The Office of Community Advocacy supports Shake-A-Leg Miami, a 501(c) (3) organization, in their efforts to promote the yearly goodwill mission of the “Impossible Dream,” a universally accessible vessel, which sailed away on May 30 from Shake-A-Leg Miami Marina, 2620 S Bayshore Drive, in Miami.
The Impossible Dream, a 60-foot catamaran, with its mixed-ability crew is sailing north to New England and back stopping in vibrant coastal cities, meeting with the innovators who are using the water and boating to improve the lives of people with disabilities. The first stop will be in Norfolk, Virginia to visit sponsor Volvo Penta and participate in the Norfolk Harbor fest Tall Ship Parade. Other stops will be at boating centers and schools with disability related organizations, VA’s, hospitals, and rehabs. About a thousand people with disabilities and their family members will enjoy the magic of sailing. U.S. President George H.W. Bush and the late First Lady Barbara Bush sailed aboard the Impossible Dream in 2015.
This catamaran was custom designed and built in 2002 for Mike Browne, a paraplegic who had the dream of sailing in a vessel that would be fully functional for a person in a wheelchair. It was purchased by Deborah Mellen, a paraplegic, who learned to sail at Shake-A-Leg Miami, and wanted to give back to the disability community and inspire those with a handicap to experience sailing.During the voyage, the participants will learn about the Shake-A-Leg Miami Watersports Center, a place where children and adults, many of whom are not only people living with a disability, but also financially disadvantaged, are able to improve their social skills, make new friendships, and increase their self-confidence through targeted programs. No other state has a center like Shake-A-Leg Miami, where the Impossible Dream is based.
“The Impossible Dream will inspire people to use the water, technology and community to improve their independence and quality of life,” said Shake-A-Leg Miami’s President Harry Horgan. “The barrier-free environment can be transformational for the disabled community around the world.”
The Office of Community Advocacy is charged with making Miami-Dade County "One Community" that embraces our diverse and unique population. Follow @AdvocacyMDC on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Editor’s note: View the pictures and video.