Maui Paddling Program Targets At Risk Populations

January 20, 2012, 8:52 AM HST · Updated January 20, 10:00 AM
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Maui Canoe Club, photo by Wendy Osher.

By Wendy Osher

The Maui Canoe Club launches a new program this weekend aimed at boosting physical and emotional well-being for at risk populations.

The Live Life Aloha program is funded by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and is coordinated in partnership with the University of Hawaii Maui College.

Program organizers say the goal of the campaign is to determine the answer to First Lady Michelle Obama’s question, “How do we engage the obese and at risk population in meaningful physical exercise, thereby reducing the potential of costly and debilitating chronic illness?”

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The Maui Canoe Club recently took possession of three canoes that were specifically configured for larger paddlers. The design will allow current members to train and paddle together with those identified through the program as being at risk.

The Live Life Aloha program provides paddling sessions for participants each Saturday morning at 8 a.m., beginning with a special launch next weekend, on Saturday, January 28, at Sugar Beach in Kihei.

The launch will feature a blessing of canoes, demonstration of their use, canoe paddling outings, food and entertainment.

The annual cost to join the program for Maui residents is just one dollar.  As full members of Maui Canoe Club, the Live Life Aloha paddlers are also welcome to paddle during all club paddling sessions, seven days per week.

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