‘Wake the World’ brings water sports to underprivileged kids

Gull Lake
Organizers bring underprivileged children out onto the water as part of a Wake the World event on Barry County's Gull Lake. (July 17, 2017)

PRAIRIEVILLE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — An organization focused on giving underprivileged children the chance to experience water sports visited Barry County Monday.

More than 80 kids were on Gull Lake, experiencing the water by boat, wakeboarding or water skiing, kneeboarding, wakesurfing and tubing.

Wake the World teamed up with Bethany Christian Services and the Kalamazoo Gospel Mission to make the lake trip a reality for foster children, refugees and homeless children.

Wake the World founder Greg Hodgin told 24 Hour News 8 a church testimonial inspired him to create the nonprofit group.

“About a week later, we were at a function and there was a couple there that had some kids from the children’s home and they were about the same age as my kids. And I’m looking at those kids thinking, ‘Man, I bet there are a lot of things that they don’t get to do that my kids just take for granted,'” he recollected.

Plainwell resident Scott Rachel spearheaded the local event.