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Red Kayak Institute Raises Scholarship Money

JoAnn Foertsch Altenbach, Mary Anne Smrz & Linda Balchunas Jandacek

JoAnn Foertsch Altenbach, ’76 Annual Fund, Mother McAuley High School; Mary Anne Smrz, Red Kayak Institute; and Linda Balchunas Jandacek ’84 Alumnae Coordinator, Mother McAuley High School (Posted by obtener33, Community Contributor)

Chicago Tribune Article

September 19, 2014 | By Community Contributor obtener33

On September 7, 2014, Mary Anne Smrz, Founder of the Red Kayak Institute, facilitated a retreat at Saganashkee Slough in southwest Cook County. In two different sessions that day, Red Kayak staff raised $3350 for the Jan Malloy Scholarship Fund at Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School.

The first kayak retreat began at 7 a.m., and the second group gathered at 11:30 a.m. Before participants launched, Brian Lewis from TheKayakers.com, gave kayaking and safety instruction. Smrz then facilitated programs that helped paddlers reconnect with nature as a way to reclaim themselves. When kayakers launched onto the Slough in the Palos Preserves of southwest Cook County, they experienced the physical, mental and spiritual healing powers of nature during a two-hour silent paddle. Group discussion circles, ending each session, opened new doors to health, creativity and wonder.

The Jan Malloy Scholarship Fund for Spirit and Community Service was established to honor Jan Malloy, former Alumnae Coordinator at Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School. Jan was an integral part of the Mother McAuley family and was a truly spirited Mighty Mac. The scholarship continues the legacy of service Jan exemplified throughout her life. Monies raised make a difference in the lives of Mother McAuley students who benefit from this award.

Mary Anne Smrz established the Red Kayak Institute in early 2013. It is a 501(C)3 nonprofit, providing programs geared toward women facing emotional or physical challenges. Contact them at PO Box 98, Westmont, IL 60559; info@paddlinon.com; (844) 733-5295, http://www.paddlinon.com/red-kayak-institute/. For More Information about Kayaking Adventure Trips, Classes & Rentals visit The Kayakers.com.