Students from AMIkids Space Coast and AMIkids Volusia recently set sail on the waters of Tampa Bay to experience learning science firsthand.
"The experience on the Orlando’s Rose was amazing,” said Isaiah G. with AMIkids Space Coast. “I had the chance to go snorkeling and learn about mangroves and plankton. It was a blast!"
Earlier this month, nearly a dozen AMIkids students participated in the “Floating Classroom” aboard Orlando’s Rose. The vessel, which was donated in 2014 by Bill and Carol Barrows, is a 65-foot Silvership that was given to AMIkids with the sole purpose of providing students the opportunity to learn about boating safety and experience the local marine environment hands on, all while developing a sense of teamwork with each other.
"It's a lot of fun to get out of the classroom and study science on the water. This is my first experience on a boat, and I am happy that AMIKids gave me this opportunity," Roshanda L. with AMIKids Volusia said.
These students earned the special opportunity to travel across the state thanks in part to their academic and behavioral achievements in their individual programs. In fact, AMIkids partners with Mote Marine Laboratory to deliver lessons on biodiversity and the overall marine ecosystem in Tampa Bay with youth getting the chance to use scientific equipment to collect research data and perform projects in the field during their time on the “Floating Classroom.”
"It's awesome to learn about different marine life in their actual environment,” AMIkids Space Coast’s Anton H. said, describing his experience. “I've never experienced anything like this before, and it makes me want to continue doing well at the program, so that I can do more outside activities."
Launched in 1969, AMIKids serves 5,000 kids across the nation annually with more than 125,000 having completed the program since its beginning. AMIkids strongly believes that a child’s troubled past does not have to dictate his or her future. That is why the nonprofit organization has been committed to developing the potential of at-risk boys and girls for nearly 50 years.
For more information on the "Floating Classroom" or how you can donate to AMIkids Boat Program, contact: