What do you get when you combine spearfishermen, world-class destinations and philanthropy? Diving for a Cause
It is an amazing feeling to participate in the activity we love at incredible locations and to know that your involvement will benefit deserving local charities! Thus is idea behind DFAC, and thanks to the commitment and energy of the organizations founder, Colleen Gallagher, and to the growing number of participants and industry icons at each event, the non-profit is building momentum.
I recently joined Colleen for the Cape Hatteras, NC event which benefitted the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, an idea inspired by the 4 year old son of a local diver that doesn’t let his CF keep him from enjoying the sea. To up the interest level, legendary spearfisherman and developer of the Freediver Recovery Vest, Dr. Terry Maas was invited along for the fun. The weather can be dicey in Hatteras but King Neptune smiled upon us delivering calm seas, clear water and a bounty of fish including Wahoo, Mahi mahi, Pompano, Amberjack, and others.
These events welcome divers of all ability levels and attract men and women from all over the country (even outside of it, with the addition of Bermuda’s diving godfather Odilio Angeli to the roster). It’s a great opportunity to learn new skills, make new friends and try different gear. Many even had the opportunity to demo Dr. Maas’s new vest.
But the participation wasn’t limited to daytime activities; aside from incredible feasts of sashimi, fish tacos and local veggie dishes there were many valuable group conversations to be had. Julie Richardson, founder of DiveWise.org, presented to the group one evening about the work her organization performs to educate freedivers about blackout. The information was eye-opening and the discussion forum that followed reinforced the global consensus that further development of safety standards is a must for our industry.
Opportunities for such rich experience do not come every day, especially ones that involve service, education, networking, diving and fun! With industry help from OMER distributor Mark Laboccetta the event far surpassed it’s pledge goal by raising over $14k and counting… and it’s not too late to contribute!
Upcoming events include West Coast Tuna hunting, Nicaragua, Tobago and many more but they’re filling up fast so don’t wait to register!!