Ocean County YMCA nears its goal for “Making Waves” initiative thanks to matching donation

The Toms River nonprofit also announces ABA inspired adaptive programming for children on the autism spectrum.

Daniel Giacin, Autism Programming Director

Daniel Giacin, Autism Programming Director

TOMS RIVER, N.J.June 22, 2022PRLog — The Ocean County YMCA is closing in on its goal of raising $185,000 for the “Making Waves for the Next Generation” initiative – thanks to a generous matching donation from The Hirair and Anna Hovnanian Foundation, Inc.

“The Hirair and Anna Hovnanian Foundation graciously offered to match our fundraising efforts once we reach $185,000,” said Gretchen Insole, Interim CEO of the Ocean County YMCA. “We have currently raised $147,191.”

The Making Waves initiative officially kicked off last November.

“We are grateful to our swimmers, supporters and donors who made the Making Waves campaign such a success,” said Michael P. Ritacco, Board of Directors’ Chair of the Ocean County YMCA.

Donations will benefit the improvements to the Y’s 12-lane aquatic center. “From the novice to the competitive swimmer, toddlers to seniors, hundreds of thousands of individuals from our community and beyond have enjoyed the pool for over 20 years,” said Insole.

Through initiatives like this, the Ocean County YMCA can continue to offer new and exciting offerings to the public like its Adaptive Swim Programs – Swimming on the Spectrum, Swimming Without Limits, Fitness on the Spectrum and Autism Friendly Swim Hour. These classes are open to children and adults with intellectual and/or physical disabilities.

“I have worked with children on the autism spectrum for the past 11 years in various capacities,” said Daniel Giacin, Autism Programming Director.

Over a period of seven years of working with autistic children while living in Oregon, Giacin’s passion helped create a program called Swimming on the Spectrum. “I am excited to bring this program here to New Jersey and to build other programs dedicated to individuals on the autism spectrum,” he added.

Swimming on the Spectrum is an ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) inspired adaptive water safety/swim program for children and adults on the autism spectrum. Swimming without Limits focuses on those with physical and intellectual/developmental disabilities.

Both programs offer an individualized curriculum, meeting each swimmer at their ability, as they work toward mastering water safety skills. “Our Adaptive Swim Classes are designed to give each and every person the skills and knowledge to be safe in and around the water, but most importantly, to have fun and enjoy!” said Giacin.

Those interested are invited to fill out the Y’s New Swimmer Questionnaire by clicking here (https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSel0o2lkxEgmEIVg…) or emailing dgiacin@ocymca.org for more information.

The Y also hosts an Autism Friendly Swim Hour, a free event that takes place after hours, to provide a more quiet, sensory-friendly environment for those on the autism spectrum. Registration is required. Learn more here. (https://ocymca.org/events/autism-friendly-swim-hour-3/)

Fitness on the Spectrum focuses on balance, movement and coordination for children with autism. One on one fitness instruction is provided based on an individual’s needs. Fitness on the Spectrum is an ABA-inspired personalized fitness class for individuals on the autism spectrum. Those interested can also contact Giacin directly at dgiacin@ocymca.org.

In addition to these programs, the Y, led by Giacin, has been working with area schools like Toms River Regional School District and Lacey Township High School on incorporating young adult programs, ages 18-21, to help transition children who are on the spectrum into young adulthood. “This is a very inclusive program that targets the mind, body and fitness,” said Giacin. “Everyone is welcome here.”

To learn more about Ocean County YMCA or to donate to the “Making Waves for the Next Generation” initiative, please visit ocymca.org.

About the Ocean County YMCA

At the Y, we take immense pride in our work to strengthen communities and help all of us be our best selves. We provide a place to play, to learn, to be healthy, and to give back. We believe that everyone, no matter who they are or where they are from, deserves the opportunity to reach their full potential. Everything the Y does is in service of making sure people and communities thrive. To learn more, visit ocymca.org.

Bedrock Ocean Exploration Wins Honorable Mention in Fast Company’s 2022 World Changing Ideas Awards –

The ocean-mapping technology company is recognized in the sixth annual awards, among leading startups including a 3D printed vaccine patch, a seawater-powered lamp, and more bold innovations tackling issues like climate change and more.

Brooklyn, NY – WEBWIRE

Bedrock Ocean Exploration, an ocean-mapping data company creating the world’s first detailed commercial and publicly available data library of the ocean, is proud to announce it has been awarded an Honorable Mention in the North American category by Fast Company’s 2022 World Changing Ideas Awards, for designing and developing technological advancements that will accelerate offshore wind development and save the planet from climate change.  

Bedrock’s two co-founders, Anthony DiMare (CEO), and Charles Chiau (CTO) started Bedrock to address the various issues the current ocean survey methods were facing, including speed, efficiency, and reliability.

[p”Understanding the sea is critical for a number of reasons, such as building more accurate climate models, improving our weather predictions, enhancing submarine communication infrastructure, understanding the ocean safety and sustainably, uncovering valuable data on telecom cables that can continue to expand internet connectivity, and improving domain awareness required to support data centers, ultimately creating a symbiotic human benefit of the ocean,” DiMare says. “By making ocean data more accessible to all, we help accelerate offshore wind development which can ultimately save the planet we call home.” [/p]

Now in its sixth year, the World Changing Ideas Awards showcase 39 winners, 350 finalists, and more than 600 honorable mentions—with climate, social justice, and AI and data among the most popular categories. A panel of eminent Fast Company editors and reporters selected winners and finalists from a pool of more than 2,997 entries across transportation, education, food, politics, technology, health, social justice, and more. In addition, several new categories have been added this year including climate, nature, water, and workplace. The 2022 awards feature entries from across the globe, from Switzerland to Hong Kong to Australia.

Other winners were honored for their efforts in creating clean technology, innovative corporate initiatives, brave new designs for cities and buildings, and other creative works that are supporting the growth of positive social innovation, tackling social inequality, climate change, and public health crises. 

About Bedrock Ocean Exploration, PBC

Bedrock, founded in 2020, is a public benefit corporation and current Seabed 2030 partner, combining proprietary AUV technology with a universal survey data cloud platform to reduce the time, environmental impact, and cost associated with seafloor exploration. Bedrock’s technological advancements will accelerate offshore wind development by drastically reducing the time necessary for construction to begin on these projects.

About the World Changing Ideas Awards: World Changing Ideas is one of Fast Company’s major annual awards programs and is focused on social good, seeking to elevate finished products and brave concepts that make the world better. A panel of judges from across sectors choose winners, finalists, and honorable mentions based on feasibility and the potential for impact. With the goals of awarding ingenuity and fostering innovation, Fast Company draws attention to ideas with great potential and helps them expand their reach to inspire more people to start working on solving the problems that affect us all.


Deep Ocean Mission would not result in any over exploitation of the marine resources by the corporate houses and will not affect the life and livelihoods of fishers in the country. The Deep Ocean Mission aims to explore deep-oceanic resources and develop technologies for their sustainable use. The outcome of the program is intended to identify potential new resources and develop technology for harnessing them in future, which may generate additional opportunity for livelihoods.

The Deep Ocean Mission is related to the Blue Economy. The activities of Deep Ocean Mission will help the components of blue economy such as fisheries, tourism and maritime transport, renewable energy, aquaculture, seabed extractive activities and marine biotechnology.

        This information was given by the Minister of State (I/C) for M/o Earth Sciences and M/o Science & Technology, Dr. Jitendra Singh in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.



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The 7th edition of Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) Conclave of Chiefs is being hosted by French Navy at Paris from 15 – 16 Nov 21. Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command, is leading a two member Indian Naval delegation for this Conclave. 

The Conclave of Chiefs is being attended by Chiefs of Navies/ Heads of Lead Maritime Agencies of IONS nations. Various bilateral interactions are also being conducted on the side-lines of the Conclave to facilitate a greater degree of maritime cooperation and understanding between the IONS nations. The 7th edition of IONS Symposium was held at Le-Reunion from 28 Jun – 01 Jul 21 in hybrid format due to COVID protocols. During the Symposium, it was agreed upon to conduct the extant Conclave of Chiefs at Paris. 

IONS was conceived by the Indian Navy in 2008 as a forum which seeks to enhance maritime co-operation among Navies of the littoral states of the Indian Ocean Region by providing an open and inclusive platform for discussions on regionally relevant maritime issues that would lead to common understanding on the way ahead. The inaugural edition of IONS was held in Feb 2008 at New Delhi, with Indian Navy as the Chair for two years. The IONS Chair is presently held with France.


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Ocean County YMCA & Toms River Regional Schools to serve free lunch to combat child hunger

The second annual Grab N’ Go Summer Meals Program will run from June 25 through September 3.

Grab N' Go Summer Meals Program starts June 25.

Grab N’ Go Summer Meals Program starts June 25.

TOMS RIVER, N.J.June 17, 2021PRLog — The Ocean County YMCA and Toms River Regional Schools will host its second annual Grab N’ Go Summer Meals Program from June 25 through September 3, Monday through Friday from 11am to 1pm. Participating youth, 18 or younger, will receive free, nutritious lunches and snacks daily. No I.D., application or proof of income is needed.

According to SchoolNutrition.org, pre-pandemic, nearly 100,000 schools/institutions serve school lunches to 29.6 million students each day, including: 20.1 million free lunches; 1.7 million reduced pay price (student pays $.40); 7.7 million full price, and 4.9 billion lunches are served annually (Source: USDA FY 2019 data). However, once the school year ends, only a small percentage of these same students can access free meals over the summer break, leaving many children without these meals.

“The Y, in partnership with Toms River Regional Schools, is working to fill that gap by keeping children healthy and well-nourished this summer, ensuring that kids reach their full potential,” said Peter T. Rosario, President and CEO of the Ocean County YMCA.

“Our longstanding and invaluable partnership with the Ocean County YMCA helps fulfill the most basic of needs for this community- food,” said Toms River Regional Schools Superintendent Thomas Gialanella. “Never is that need more pronounced than right now, as we enter the hot summer months, when school is out and children and families are maybe uncertain of what’s available to them, and as we continue to navigate the challenges of a pandemic. Through our school sites, the tireless efforts of the Y, and the support of many others throughout Toms River, I am proud that our district plays a role in helping to feed students and families throughout this community during summer, and I encourage everyone to take advantage of this amazing program.”

The Ocean County YMCA and Toms River Regional Schools will begin serving meals Monday through Friday, June 25 through September 3, from 11am-1pm. Participating youth will receive nutritious lunches and snacks daily. This program will be available at the Ocean County YMCA, as well as nine Toms River Schools (High School East, 1225 Raider Way, Toms River; High School South, 55 Hyers Street, Toms River; Beachwood Elementary, 901 Berkeley Avenue, Beachwood; Cedar Grove Elementary, 173 Cedar Grove Road, Toms River; Citta Elementary, 2050 Lakewood Road, Toms River; Pine Beach Elementary, 101 Pennsylvania Avenue, Pine Beach; Silver Bay Elementary, 100 Silver Bay Road, Toms River; South Toms River Elementary, 419 Dover Road, Toms River; South Toms River Elementary, 419 Dover Road, Toms River, and Walnut Street Elementary, 60 Walnut Street, Toms River).

“Hunger has a lasting impact on the development of children,” said Rosario. “Giving kids access to nutrition-filled meals allows kids to focus, learn and become empowered to reach their full potential. The Grab N’ Go Summer Meals Program is a wonderful way for us to keep our kids strong and combat hunger.”

To learn more about the Grab N’ Go Summer Meals Program, call or email Jennifer Poulos at jpoulos@ocymca.org or visit ocymca.org/summermeals.

About the Ocean County YMCA

At the Y, we take immense pride in our work to strengthen communities and help all of us be our best selves. We provide a place to play, to learn, to be healthy, and to give back. We believe that everyone, no matter who they are or where they are from, deserves the opportunity to reach their full potential. Everything the Y does is in service of making sure people and communities thrive. To learn more, visit ocymca.org.