Mobile Rec program buoys high school senior’s growth and development

Published on August 20, 2021

two adults smile with a young man who just got done swimming

The story of Paschal High School senior Daniel Munoz is a testament to the value of the Park & Recreation Department’s Mobile Rec program.

“Daniel has been with Mobile Rec program as a participant for seven years and now is one of our teachers,” said Richard Sybesma, retired TCU swimming and diving coach who now works with the Mobile Rec program. “Thank you to the Rainwater Foundation for helping children learn to swim, and to Park & Recreation program coordinator Sandra Medina for helping the youth of Fort Worth become great citizens.”

The Mobile Rec Summer Day Camp presents recreational, cultural and educational activities for children ages 5-14. Activities include arts and crafts, drama, songs, biking, fishing, games, field trips, tennis, swimming lessons, gardening, service learning, STEM activities, robotics, golf, speakers and more.

Here is Munoz’s story in his own words:

“I joined the Mobile Recreation program 10 years ago when I was 8 years old, when I had recently immigrated to this country from Mexico. With a small grasp of the language and no friends, I joined this program. Since that day I have met many people who became my friends and are still my friends to this day. 

“Through Mobile Rec, I learned many social skills while also developing my athletic and educational skills. For many years Mobile Rec gave me many unforgettable summers as a camper, and when I turned 15, I decided to become a volunteer for the program, which I still am to this day.

“Through this program I also met coach Richard Sybesma and the Rainwater Foundation, which helped me learn everything related to swimming. I went from a kid who could barely put his head underwater, to mastering every swimming stroke to perfection.

“Thanks to this program, I decided to join other programs where I could share my experience and help other children in my community to reach their swimming potential. I have volunteered with the Fort Worth Drowning Prevention Coalition for many years now. With this program I am allowed to help many children who come from diverse backgrounds and teach them proper pool rules and how to deal with a drowning situation, whether involving themselves or someone else.

“Through these programs I met many kids who come from rough neighborhoods involved with violence and drugs. I grew up in those same neighborhoods, so I understand where these kids come from, and I want to help those kids escape those neighborhoods. That is my drive in helping my community and the reason I volunteer for all these programs.

“Now I am an incoming senior at R.L Paschal High School, where I am in the top 20% of my class and play varsity football. I plan to apply to Texas A&M University, where I want to study to become a software engineer. I would not be in this position without the help of both the Mobile Rec program and the Rainwater Foundation.”

 

 

Photo: Swimming instructor Daniel Munoz, center, stands with Richard Sybesma and Sandra Medina.

 

 

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