Kokatat, a US manufacturer of technical apparel and accessories for water sports, donated over $20,000 in product to the local Arcata, CA organization Disabled Adventure Outfitters (DAO), for use in its watersports programs for people with hemophilia and other bleeding disorders.
“DAO does amazing work empowering and challenging people with bleeding disorders in and around our community and we’re proud to support a local organization that shares our passion for paddlesports,” said Kit Mann, Kokatat Special Projects Manager.
DAO will use the personal floatation devices, dry suits, paddle jackets, and additional gear provided by Kokatat for its programs that range from one-day trips to weeklong camps. DOA’s programs primarily consist of rafting and inflatable kayaking on the Trinity River, with longer camps also including advanced river skill challenges, as well as rock climbing, hiking, gold panning, or ropes course sessions.
“Kokatat’s generosity will ensure that people of all ages with bleeding disorders in our community and beyond will have the opportunity to experience the freedom, excitement, and fun of paddlesports,” said Todd Smith president of DAO.
In addition to using the donated gear for its own programming, DAO will distribute a portion of the product to other non-profit organizations around the country with outdoor programs. Recently, DAO representatives attended the North American Camping Conference of Hemophilia Organizations, where they identified and distributed some of the Kokatat gear.
DAO was founded in 1996 by Bret Leach and Bill Wing. Leach, who had hemophilia — a hereditary disease that prevents normal blood clotting, resulting in sometimes uncontrolled bleeding- personally understood the positive therapeutic effects of being out on the water. DAO became a nonprofit organization in 1998 and has since grown to provide services to disabled people through out Northern California.