About us

Discover your potential

       LifeSail, Inc. launched in January of 2003, with the goal of helping navigate children through life’s challenges. We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, supported through the generous donations of people like you!
Through the mentorship of Jim Kilroy and his support to the national body of US Sailing, LifeSail was chosen in 2012 to pilot the Reach program on the west coast. To-date, we are one of few operations on the west coast implementing Reach, US Sailing’s STEM Program and Environmental Education Initiative aligned to National Education Standards, offering character and life-skill building activities to under-served and at-risk kids year round. We have served over five thousand children in Los Angeles county.
        LifeSail operates year round, teaching the importance of ownership, teamwork and leadership, through sailing and boat-building activities. Our goal is to instill a you-can-do philosophy, training self-confidence and determination through the art of sailing and water navigation. As kids grow in the program, they are given ever increasing responsibility, coming away with specific skill-sets and goals. As a result, grades improve, and long-term life goals are established, nurtured and pursued.

A Bit About Us

Turning Interest Into Action

Here at LifeSail Community Sailing Center, we’re committed to investing our expertise and resources in order to further achieve our cause. Since 2000, we’ve been supporting our community members in a variety of ways and measuring our success not by monetary size, but by more qualitative measurements such as the scale and effectiveness of our efforts. Just imagine what we can achieve together!

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2014 summer-18
2014 summer-18
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Here is what volunteers are saying

Marenda Kyle

Hawthorne, California

Lifesail has been a transforming part of my summer. From being terrified of the water to getting out in a small boat and being surrounded by it, I've learned to conquer fears and a skill that has made me more adventurous. To help do the same thing for children has been a joy.

Joshua Wendell

Northridge, California

Volunteering for LifeSail is one of the most rewarding things I have done in my life. I love teaching kids and I learn new things about sailing everyday

Nora Thiaprasit

Panorama City, California

I  like to help people. When I see someone achieve their goal to learn how to tack correctly or dock, well then it makes me happy to learn that the student achieved the goal they set out to do. So it's a rewarding experience not just for my self but for the students that takes that experience with them as well

Eddie Arevalo

Hawthrone, California

"Volunteering for life sail taught me how to be handy. Maintaining the boats was important to our safety and the safety of the children. I developed a keen eye for detail while working on the boats. I also learned to make things and to think outside the box. We constantly needed creative solutions to unforeseen problems. Life Sail taught me to have a relentless work ethic, to never settle for what was there and to always look for improvements. After a hard day's work, we would unwind and de-stress by going sailing. Those afternoons in the water will be unforgettable

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Our Awards

Awarded US Sailing’s Sailor of the Week to Matt Schulz

Awarded Excellence in Instruction from US Sailing Community Sailing Committee

Awarded Ocean Science Leadership Award for Informal Teaching Excellence to Matt Schulz

Awarded Certificate of Recognition from Hawthorne School District – Hawthorne Mathematics and Science Academy After-School Program

2014 Awarded commemoration from the County of Los Angeles – Hosting Belvedere Lake Sail-A-Thon

2013 Awarded commemoration from the County of Los Angeles – Hosting Belvedere Lake Sail-A-Thon

Our Achievements

– LifeSail introduced over 1200 children to the Reach / STEM program over the last years, and exposed over 6,000 children to sailing.
– LifeSail has completed 4 consecutive years of boat building programs with Heart of Los Angeles (HOLA).
-LifeSail is starting the 6th consecutive year of boat building with Hawthorne Math and Science Academy.(HMSA)
-LifeSail Completed its first Boatbuilding Program with students from 8 to 9 years old, in record time, with The Exploratory (STEM focused facility).
– LifeSail has constructed fourteen (with two additional in progress, through East LA and YWCA) wooden Optis, incorporating US Sailing’s Reach / STEM program.
– LifeSail has held its 14h summer sailing program;  incorporating HMSA Students for the 4th year as assisting coaches and volunteers.
– LifeSail has sailed four times on MacArthur Park’s Westlake with HOLA students, during ‘Taste the food at MacArthur Park’.
– LifeSail is the first to ever sail on MacArthur Park’s Westlake since the 1930’s. In the year 2012 there were only 5 Optis and dinghies sailing, and 10 students on that Lake. In 2014, LifeSail provided 10 Optis with 20 students. Students from the first and second classes taught the newcomers from incoming classes.
– LifeSail exposed 300 kids to sailing on lake Belvedere in East LA.
– LifeSail also donated 75 different sailing books to the public library in East Los Angeles.
– LifeSail has completed over 10 keel boat sailing trips to Catalina. These trips included participation from HOLA, APCH, HMSA and the youngest student to ever attend, at 7 years old. The students learned about seamanship, applying STEM, Catalina’s history, and Catalina’s flora and fauna through hiking, Kayaking and snorkeling expeditions.
– LifeSail completed our second, 5 day non-stop sailing trip to the northern Chanel Islands. Participants learned Leadership, Navigation, the history and the natural environment of the islands and seamanship (STEM related). Youngest participant was 13 years of age.
– LifeSail became the 4th accredited US Sailing Community Sailing Center in California. 
– LifeSail was the largest participant at US Sailing’s STEM / Reach ‘Sailing Through STEM Night’.
– Matt Schulz, President of LifeSail, received the USC Ocean Science Leadership Award for Excellence in Informal Teaching.
– LifeSail expanded its relationship with the Fire and Sheriff’s Departments throughout LA County, as well as with the USCG.
– Two LifeSail students received the first Paul Stanford Bernhard Collage Scholarship Award.
– Daniel Dimal, who has been with LifeSail for 12 years and who serves as an Instructor and Coach, completed his US Navy Boot Camp with honors. He self-admittedly entered with the highest possible rank due to his training at LifeSail. He has now completed his Naval Nuclear Engineering Program.
– LifeSail continues to participate in the Nationwide Ocean Pollution Rosario Project.+
– Denise Guzman completed her 3rd year as coach and personal assistant to Matt Schulz. She originally joined LifeSail as the youngest HMSA student, building her boat during early 2012 and learning to sail the same summer. She began instructing students in US Sailing’s Reach Program in 2012 and became a US Sailing small boat Sailing L1 Instructor. She is also the youngest LifeSail board member and a full time college student.