APS News Release

APS Aquatics Center to Partner with Diveheart Scuba Program for People with Disabilities

The Arlington Public Schools Aquatics program is collaborating with Washington D.C. chapter of Diveheart, a not-for-profit organization based in Illinois, to bring its Adaptive Scuba Diving Program for individuals of all abilities to the DC area. The Inaugural event will take place on Sun, May 21 at the Wakefield High School Pool, 1325 S. Dinwiddie Street from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. The program is being coordinated by area residents Rosemary Ciotti and Kay Pearson.

Diveheart works to build confidence, independence, and self-esteem in children, adults, and veterans of all abilities through scuba diving, scuba therapy, and related activities. Utilizing certified adaptive dive buddies, Diveheart provides safe and inclusive activities for adaptive divers to enjoy the wonders of the aquatic world. It is our hope to inspire participants to take on challenges that might have seemed impossible before.

Ciotti, who is a nurse practitioner, learned how to scuba dive with Diveheart, and has traveled with the organization three times to Cozumel. Pearson, who has her master’s degree in human environment relations, researched the benefits of scuba diving for individuals who use wheelchairs as her thesis topic. She is a certified rescue diver, and became a Diveheart advanced adaptive buddy last year.

For additional information about the event, email rosemary.ciotti@gmail.com