The following submission was made as an entry to win a OC1 from an amazingly generous donor, who wanted to see the canoe truly enjoyed, rather than turn a profit. Entrants were asked to submit an essay answering the following:
- Part 1: “Describe how paddling has changed your life.”
- Part 2: “How do you plan to use this canoe, and perhaps someday pass it along?”
Cash Martin, California
Paddling changed my life physically, mentally, spiritually, and socially. I have been paddling for 7 years. 2017-18 was the year that Ikuna Koa’s 10 and under crew won 1st place. It changed my life mentally, because it gave me the nerve to interact with other kids and adults that I’ve never met before.
It changed me physically, because before I started, I went to Hawai’i with my mom (Hauoli) for 6 months, As I was there, I started feeling a change. So, After the vacation my sister and brother have noticed somethings about me. So, when we started paddling it encouraged me to workout and get fit. So, I can feel prouder of myself and some other life goals that still must be achieved.
It changed me spiritually, because I didn’t know much about my culture. Until I started paddling before paddling, we sing a special chant talking about the gods and to let us be blessed on our journey out on the ocean. It taught me the religious and cultural ways of my ancestors. Also, its been amazing to learn about my culture and being able to know myself as a Hawaiian.
In conclusion, it changed me socially, because it got me to communicate to younger and older kids. It also gave me enough courage to make friends. But not only me but my parents as well.