GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT)- Area children kayaked on the Tar River today. For all of the children it was their first time kayaking. The opportunity was made possible by Sound Rivers, a non profit organization. The youth kayaking program gives underprivileged youth the opportunity to experience the Tar River and receive environmental education. Sound Rivers mission is to protect and enhance the Neuse and Tar-Pamlico Rivers. This program goes right in line with that.
Matt Butler with Sound Rivers said, “we’re trying to change the mentality of these kids to know the river is there and know about the river as apart of the environmental education.”
The program is free for the kids and last four weeks. The first three weeks were dedicated to learning how to kayak, which helped some of the children face their fears. During the last week the kids put all of their skills to the test by kayaking from the Town Common to Port Terminal.
One of the participants, James Condery, said, “I was nervous at first when I first came to this program, but I feel pretty good now.”
The program is about more than just kayaking according to Liz Houde, one of the coordinators.
“Its important for kids to have instructed kind of time to play and explore and see something that they are curious about, and see the world around them instead of just being on their computer and being on a screen,” Houde said.
The program is in its second year and is funded by a grant from The Conservation Fund and Wells Fargo.