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Day On The Bay Helps Refugee Students Adjust To Life In San Diego

San Diego refugee high school students learn to paddle board on the San Diego...

Photo by Kris Arciaga

Above: San Diego refugee high school students learn to paddle board on the San Diego Bay, June 23, 2017.

Several San Diego refugee high school students hit the water Friday to participate in a youth outreach program.

The event, held by Outdoor Outreach and El Cajon Valley High School’s HOPE/PRIDE Summer Program, invited 30 students to kayak and do stand-up paddle boarding activities on the San Diego Bay.

“It looks like just a fun play day out on San Diego Bay, which it is, but the deeper issue is, a lot of these kids haven't had the opportunity to feel safe outside,” said Ben McCue, executive director of Outdoor Outreach. “To be able to play because many of them come from the Middle East, from war torn countries and that sense of play is critically important to youth development.”

Organizers said the goal was to help refugee youth adjust to their new life by introducing them to “classic San Diego” activities.

San Diego County is the nation’s largest resettlement site for refugees from around the world.

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