We started our Caymanian Internship Program in 2014, as part of our desire to build awareness in Cayman for all persons with disabilities. Our signature event, Push Across Cayman, which we started in 2012, enables us to drive disability awareness in Cayman, by visiting schools in Cayman in the week leading up to the weekend event. An extension of that campaign is our Caymanian Internship Program, and we are delighted Trent, Ricardo, Janessa, and Emily, Keanu, and Jaeda have participated in our programs.

In 2014, Trent Jackson and Ricardo Martinez were our first two interns, each joining a week-long SCUBA diving certification program for first-time divers with disabilities. The intent of the internship program is to give each intern the opportunity to assist our divers both in and out of the water, while learning about the challenges our divers face in the process. It’s a rewarding experience for both the interns and our divers, as they learn from one another, while learning to dive and enjoying activities. Our able-bodied interns get certified in diving along with our participants, and, in the end, friendships are formed. The ultimate “take-away” is having our interns become ambassadors of Stay-Focused, and working with us to promote disability awareness in Cayman.

Janessa Prendergast joined us in the summer of 2015, and returned the following summer to join our returning divers. In the summer of 2017, Jaeda Kirchman joined the program for the first time, and Keanu Oliver returned to join his reunion group.

We source our interns from Clifton Hunter High School and John Gray High School. We look forward to having one intern from each school join us in the summer of 2018, and working with all of our interns as members of the Stay-Focused family.

“Learning how to dive for me was at first exciting, and also very new, as I’m used to being on land. But the moment I was in the water, I loved it. I also learned a lot about the underwater world of the ocean.”

– Keanu Oliver, Stay-Focused diver, 2016.