"Rowing Unity: ...

"Rowing Unity: A Transatlantic Tale of Two Crews"

Two very special rowing clubs, one from Chicago and the other from Galway in Ireland, are coming together to build connections, share stories, and inspire each other and their communities at large. This is an exciting development that promises to produce positive outcomes that will last a lifetime.

Row to Recovery & Recovery on Water - how it started

Born and raised in Galway, currently living in Chicago, Nuala Kavanagh diagnosed with Breast Cancer in 2007. She became co-chair of Chicago Galway Sister Cities in 2022 and was relooking at the complete exchange system between Chicago and Galway and potential networking projects.

Haven spoken with Recovery on Water in Chicago, she was interested in talking with Row to Recovery about how they could work on some exchanges between both organisations with a larger goal of hosting each organisation on the opposite side of the Atlantic with an event that would center around rowing and also include discussions on breast cancer, the care we receive, life after diagnosis, treatment and more.

Tara Hoffmann represents Recovery on Water in Chicago, they came to be in 2007 when a breast cancer survivor and a high school rowing coach had the same idea at the same time: that rowing could provide both exercise and community to women emerging from breast cancer treatment. They now serve over 100 women.

Robin Winkels represents Row to Recovery in Galway, a charity that offers rowing as an option for women and men affected by cancer. Through the physical and therapeutic benefits of this sport, Row to Recovery provides people with physical healing and more importantly a supportive community. The groups unwavering passion and commitment to making a positive impact in the lives of those battling cancer exemplify the remarkable difference getting involved with a new sport can make.

All three women are now working together with their teams to launch a new initiative that promises to bring these two clubs together to create an amazing journey for members.

What this initiative will bring

The idea of connecting these two clubs is a great one. Rowing is a sport that brings people together, promoting teamwork, healthy competition, and healthy living. When the members are all people affected by a cancer diagnosis the effect is even more profound as the benefits of such a partnership go far beyond the sport itself. By bringing people from different cultures together, this partnership promises to build bridges and foster understanding between communities that might otherwise be strangers to each other.

These two clubs are a perfect match. They share similar values and are both committed to using rowing to make a positive impact on their lives. By working together, they will be able to achieve their goals more effectively, sharing ideas, and building on each other's strengths.

Exciting Times ahead

Exciting times lie ahead for these two clubs as they embark on this new adventure. We will keep you posted as this exciting new partnership develops, and we are confident that it will lead to many positive outcomes that will benefit everyone involved. The coming together of these two rowing clubs is a great example of how sport can be used to build relationships, foster understanding, and promote support from peers who have been through a similar experience.

All three are excited about the potential of this new collaboration. Robin remarks ‘I recognise that both groups share the same goals, have the same type of members, and are both interested in learning from each other, making new friends, and building lasting relationships. It’s a perfect match’.

“I feel that there is a lot that we can learn from each other, and we are keen to share our own insights and experiences with them too.” says Tara

Nuala adds “This partnership promises to be a fruitful one. The clubs plan to organise rowing events in the USA and Ireland, travel to each other's countries to explore and connect, and conduct panel discussions. These activities are aimed at fostering positive relationships that will enhance the experiences of everyone involved.”

Exciting times ahead indeed, we look forward to keeping you posted as we develop this new friendship.

"Rowing Unity: A Transatlantic Tale of Two Crews"
Why Rowing?

Why Rowing?

Rowing is a cerebral low impact sport that utilizes the whole body and is accessible to all, regardless of fitness level. While a certain level of fitness is helpful, full training is offered by certified coaches and absolute beginners are welcome. Nor is age a barrier, our members range from early forty to late sixty.

Regaining a level of fitness, learning the skill of rowing, training and being part of a rowing crew in a very supportive, non competitive, fun manner are just some of the many benefits cancer patients have found when they join our crew.