HOTS Winter: Voyaging with Children

HOTS Winter / Spring 2014: Voyaging With Children!

This season 2014 HEART OF THE STORM will be serving the local children and teens in Hopetown, Bahamas, and Blue Hill, Maine, through a unique small-group 'follow-your-heart' based voyaging program on board the fifty-two foot all-teak ketch ALIENTO. From February through April 2014, the goal of HOTS is to provide a continuous flow of no-cost daylong and multi-day voyages to local youth.

Serving Children With Diverse Backgrounds!

NOW is our time. This is our special goal of Heart Of The Storm; to see children with significantly diverse socio-economic backgrounds experiencing the magic of voyaging together! HOTS kids will learn life-saving and wilderness-survival & trekking skills, scuba dive for lost treasure, and sail to exciting islands; all the while learning about the preservation of our earth and the oceans, and connecting positively with themselves, each other, and the environment, on a whole new level!

Make a Heart-Felt difference through Heart Of The Storm!

With your help we can make a significant heart-felt difference in the lives of more than 100 socio-economically-diverse children from Hopetown, Bahamas, and Blue Hill. Voyages that effectively teach about compassion and connection, aid in healing of displacement and isolation, and promote a heart-based vision of HOPE and COURAGE in our youth for our SHARED FUTURE.

Time for the Next Big Step!

This is the NEXT BIG STEP for HEART OF THE STORM; and HOTS needs your support to make it happen for ALL OF US. Please consider giving the honor and positive intention of your contribution to a loved one for a gift, presenting a true sign of HOPE in today's world. Call or email to arrange a special Gift Card to be mailed directly to you or your loved one.

HOTS: Passionate About Contributing to a Better World!

HOTS was founded by Christina Montano and Nielsen van Duijn in 2011 to bring love, hope, and courage to local youth in Blue Hill and surrounding areas, in Maine during the summers, and to provide the same to communities in southern waters during the winter seasons. Having achieved its goals in Maine during summer of 2013, HOTS has been making its way down to the southern waters of Florida, and the Bahamas, where more great work can be done to aid local youth through 'heart-based' voyaging.

Your Contributions Have Helped HOTS So Much!

HEART OF THE STORM graciously acknowledges the substantial support received from the Blue Hill community and beyond in the form of cash contributions and volunteer hours. HOTS has already produced several films about our voyages, and makes it a point to extend special thanks to all of our supporters in the film credits.

We've all been working hard on HOTS!

As is often the case with grassroots start-ups, founders Christina Montano and Nielsen van Duijn continue to provide substantial private funding for the operational costs of HOTS, and contributed more than half of the actual costs of running programs in Maine waters in 2012 and 2013. Passionate as they are about the ocean, and helping young people develop a greater sense of themselves, the van Duijns have put in hundreds of hours creating and operating the HOTS programs for local youth.

We can't do it without Your Support!

Your generous support, be it large or small, makes a tremendous difference--sometimes the critical difference--in Helping HOTS to achieve its Winter/ Spring 2014 goal of voyaging with a significant number of socio-economically-diverse kids from the Bahamas, and Blue Hill, Maine. And whether you can provide financial support or not, perhaps you would be willing to tell your friends and family about HOTS. There are so many ways to help! Thank you!

Special Announcement: HOTS Summer Night Celebration 2014!

Plans are underway for a first annual HOTS Alumni Reunion celebration to be held in August 2014 (exact date TBD) at the Caterpillar Hill Initiative Avalonia Mandala Amphitheater in Sedgewick, Maine. The event will honor as special guests all HOTS's donors and contributors, will be a great opportunity for donors to meet some of the 'voyagers', and will showcase the works of Heart Of The Storm. Light fare will be served, and live entertainment provided by some great singers and musicians you won't want to miss, is sure to make this a summer night to remember! Stay-tuned here for updates!

A Word from HOTS co-founder Nielsen van Duijn

I want to take this opportunity to extend my deepest gratitude to all those that have so generously supported us along the way. I could not do any of this work, as passionate and determined as I am about voyaging, the oceans, humanity in general, and our children specifically, without the hard work of so many that have been a big part of Heart Of The Storm.

Beyond the immediate supporters, others have come straight out-of-the-blue and made major contributions, as if sent as angels on missions from afar. One recent manifestation of this came about as a donation of a virtually brand-new engine for our intrepid sailing vessel Aliento from someone who had only just learned about our work (and engine plight) through another supporter!

Whatever the size of the donation, I'm deeply moved when people take the time to reach out and give of themselves. Again, thank you all so very much for your vast and varied, and always essential, contributions!
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Christina Montano 
Blue Hill, ME
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