55 year-old Randy Carillo began participating with Achieve Tahoe in 2016, and has been hooked ever since. Every year Randy comes up once a winter to ski and once a summer to participate in our Sierra Summer Sports Day Camp with Harbor Supported Living Services, out of Santa Cruz, CA.
“Harbor Supported Living Services (HSLS) provides support to adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities so they can live their own independent and meaningful lives,” says Jonathan Smith, a facilitator at HSLS. “The main goal is to help people reach their goals and live their dreams without barriers.”
Every year, a group from HSLS comes to Tahoe to experience the freedom of outdoor recreation. While skiing, Randy has skied in both a bi-ski and our tetra-ski, an automated ski that through a joy stick allows more independence in turning for participants with complex physical disabilities. In summer, Randy has kayaked, tubed, jetskied, and, of course, sunbathed.
“I love flying down the hill. I like the snow and was born and raised to fly!” Randy said, referring to downhill skiing with Achieve Tahoe. In summer, Randy’s favorite part is jetskiing, though he said he also loves “sitting in the sun on [Donner] lake, making friends, and sharing experiences.”
Coming to Achieve Tahoe is something that Randy looks forward to every year, and Jonathan has noticed that as Randy has participated over the years, he has built confidence, self-esteem, and an understanding that he is capable of whatever he puts his mind to.
“It’s an overall great experience that everyone should try,” Johnathan says. “Adaptive sports removes the limitations that society places on people with disabilities, and the [Achieve Tahoe] staff are compassionate individuals that enlighten the program for its participants.”
The Achieve Tahoe team also looks forward to seeing Randy every year.
“His enthusiasm is infectious,” says Josephine Cormier, Sierra Summer Sports Program Coordinator. “His smile when he gets off the water brightens everyone’s day.”
Randy’s advice to anyone participating with Achieve Tahoe? “It’s fun!”
Thank you to Randy and Johnathan for sharing your experience with Achieve Tahoe, and we look forward to seeing you again soon!
Support Athletes like Randy!
You can support our adaptive programs and help more people with disabilities experience the freedom of outdoor recreation by joining our 2023 Ability Challenge! Either make a fundraising page and rally your network, or donate to one of our fundraiser’s pages to help them raise awareness and funds for our adaptive recreation programs.