Members of Sailing Heals, cancer patients, and their caretakers took to the water in Marblehead last Thursday aboard a vintage yacht for a day of relaxation.
Sailing Heals is a newly chartered independent nonprofit based in Massachusetts. Its mission is to bring cancer patients and their caretakers out on the water for days of healing and repite. The launch of the organization will take place this Thursday in Nantucket.
Sailing Heals came to Marblehead during the Classic Yacht Regatta at the Corinthian Yacht Club. Patients and their caregivers ventured out on the vintage yacht Mariella for a two-hour cruise around the harbor.
Those aboard were Mariella’s owner Carlo Falcone, Janet Nieto, Ed Tschann, Melinda Lee, Gary Gregory, Michelle Gallagher, Trisha Boisvert, Linnea Duff, and her son, Peter.
The launch of Sailing Heals means much to the cancer patients, their caregivers and those behind the organization.
Boisvert said the charity will ultimately serve other regions and may be expanded to other “people in need of a rejuvenating day on the water,” but the initial focus is to draw attention to the need for ongoing care for cancer patients to help them reclaim their lives after a traumatic illness.
“People sometimes forget that it’s not just the patients who go through the treatments, it’s the families and caregivers, too. We want to celebrate their contributions as well,” Boisvert added.
“We are thrilled to partner with Panerai on this exciting event to kick off the 2011 Opera House Cup and to celebrate the newly launched nonprofit Sailing Heals,” said Sara Kelly, senior managing director of development for Massachusetts General Hospital. “We know that our patients and their caregivers appreciate a relaxing escape that a day at sea brings to their often challenging treatment schedules.”
Sailing Heals aims to provide enjoyable sailing and boating experiences to individuals, families, caretakers and staff who may benefit from a congenial, healing day on the water. Persons who have gone through traumatic experiences, such as intensive cancer treatments or the death of a loved one from cancer or another serious illness, are invited to be guests of volunteer sailors, who donate their time, boats, and talents. Independent sponsors also provide the necessary funding to undertake the sailing outings and provide hospitality.
For more information, visit www.sailingheals.org.