December 11, 2019 – Charlotte, NC – The Dralla Foundation recently sponsored a First Climb in Fairfield NJ at the New Jersey Rock Gym. The full day event invited locale therapists, clinicians and rock climbing enthusiastists to join for a morning session geared to adaptive rock climbing for the challenged population. Belay training was required for anyone not already certified by NJ Rock Gym, followed by a two hour session on adaptive climbing, led by First Climb instructor Tommy Lyon and assisted by Peak Potential President Danit Mark. Tommy and Danit covered adaptive techniques, equipment, approaches to climbing and approaches to the wall. How to use “playground rules” when working together with a person with physical or mobility challenge and respect for the adaptive devices or equipment that person might use. We were fortunate enough to have a participant join us for the training and Charlotte was able to demonstrate some of the approaches and techniques that were described.
Lunch was provided for everyone before the First Climb clinic began at 1 pm, giving our morning trainees the chance to put into practice what they had learned. We also had a group of volunteers join us for the day from Allard USA, the parent company of the Dralla Foundation. Additionally we were honored to introduce the parents of Timothy Piazza to OPAF First Clinics and the Dralla Foundation. Tim was the Penn State student killed in a hazing accident in 2017. Orthotics and prosthetics was to be his career choice. His family has created a foundation to help with prosthetic and orthotic componentry.
The afternoon saw LOTS of climbing and comments about the day. “An awesome event with friendly and open communication. The idea of inclusion is wonderful and about time. Thank you for that”“I climbed super high and surpassed by goals”
All attendees were presented with OPAF backpacks filled with lots of goodies, including Dralla hats plus flashlights and magazines and more. Peak Potential will continue to work together with these climbers to scale new heights!