Katie and her father, John, have been involved with Achieve Tahoe since she was 14 years old. Katie, now 33, has participated in just about every Achieve Tahoe program, but loves snow skiing and waterskiing the most. Katie had hydrocephalus at birth causing global developmental delays and mild cerebral palsy which affect her language/speech, vision, physical abilities, and mental capabilities. Her unique abilities make it challenging for her to participate in outdoor sports.

John had a difficult time teaching Katie to snow ski prior to coming to Achieve Tahoe. Achieve Tahoe instructors were able to help Katie successfully ski and have fun. Over the years, Katie has made strides in her independence while spending quality time with her dad. John has given back in many ways as a volunteer instructor and giving talks at events to spread the word about Achieve Tahoe.

Being an educator by profession – as a teacher, counselor, and school administrator – I had been making attempts to teach Katie to ski before Achieve Tahoe. Once I observed the program, the quality of staff, instructors, and instructional approach, I knew that I wanted to be a part of this program wherever I could help out.

Everyone involved in Achieve Tahoe has always been helpful, supportive, and loving. It always has a feeling of home whenever we ski those familiar runs and see all of the folks we admire. There are many other parents and students that have become good friends over the years. It is something special to share for Father and Daughter time as well.

 Achieve Tahoe allows Katie to do more physical activities, which are a challenge for her. These activities give her confidence. She knows she can do this! …and the program is a great social outlet for her.”

-John M., Katie’s dad