Besides the experience of fishing and catching, there is so much that goes on inside those little hearts and minds at C.A.S.T. for Kids events. We say the day is all about the fishing but there is more that goes on, so much more. I am not sure if it’s the fishing, or the water, or all the love in the air, but we find many participants experience a great deal of emotional healing at C.A.S.T. for Kids events.
The parents themselves express this transformation best:
“I have never seen my son so calm, focused, and emotionally regulated. His behavior prevents him or limits him and so many activities. It’s heartbreaking because he really wants to participate but his disabilities impact him so greatly that the experience is often negative. As a family, we have experienced a lot of trauma recently and it has been very difficult to find the time and resources to be able to have fun adventures together. This was by far the best we’ve ever had! I’m so grateful to have been part of the experience and it has built his confidence and his bond with his sister as well. It has also given him something to help with his social challenges by having something to talk about that he feels so good about. Also having a positive experience with such an incredible male role model was huge!” –Parent of a Participant, Lake Washington
“Our sweet son who is nonverbal, autistic and has epilepsy very often lives inside himself and takes very little notice to his surroundings. But at the C.A.S.T. for Kids event something sparked an interest. Once on the boat, he was looking around as if he had never seen the world before. Our boat captain and his helper were so sweet in helping spark any interest and involvement and he actually opened up to them. We saw smiles, heard laughter and he was thrilled with the big Crawdad he caught. It brought tears of happiness for his Dad and I to see him enjoy this new experience so fully. To top it off, he was so proud of the plaque and medal he got. We will hold and cherish these memories for years to come. Thank you C.A.S.T. for Kids” –Parent of a Participant, Strawberry Reservoir
Notice there is no mention of catching fish yet both parties still had an incredible day at C.A.S.T. for Kids! We get very similar comments from many other parents.
The outdoor activities at our events facilitate a transformational experience that impact both kids and parents far beyond the day of the event. We are thankful that a little fishing goes a long way!