Sky is the limit for the young flyers of Tomorrow’s Aeronautical Museum
As a kid, most of us had probably wished to fly like a bird. But now, this is literally possible for the Compton children. This has been possible for Robin Petgrave, a pilot, who is teaching kids to reach for the sky. Robin started Tomorrow’s Aeronautical Museum (TAM), when he was disturbed to see the increasing percentage of Compton children falling victim to gang violence and drugs.
Tomorrow’s Aeronautical Museum is a unique after school program for the youths of Compton, California. Here, hundreds of children as young as 5 are learning how to fly. They learn about aerodynamics, math and science. They’re coaxed to sit in helicopters and play with the gears, and they practice flying on flight simulators until they’re ready for the real thing.
Robin started the program to promote discipline and accountability, to help each child for his or her future journey at school, in the workplace, and in the community. To participate in the program, kids must maintain a good grade point average, stay out of trouble, and have a positive attitude. In order to earn flight time, students must finish their homework, help each other with their studies, and do chores around the airport such as wash airplanes and sweep the hangar.
The kids come here with all kinds of situations. They’re 8-year-olds who have witnessed a murder. There are demographics and situations that can overwhelm a kid and put them in a position where they have no control, and they wind up part of the criminal justice system. This gives them an out. Said, Robin Petgrave.
The program runs on the grants, donations and the goodwill of others. Petgrave has dedicated his life to the program. He uses his personal money and his family’s funds to supplement the program and keep it going. In the process he even lost his home.
This program, it’s bigger than me; it’s bigger than my family. Something really phenomenal is about to happen here. We’re working on a program now to make some of these kids astronauts. If I have to live out of a cardboard box, then so be it. Robin Petgrave
It is wonderful to see these young children learning to fly. They wish to become pilots, doctors, dentists and what not! It seems Robin Petgrave’s program has added wings to these young minds, realizing their dreams to fly high to reach the sky; because the sky is the only limit.
Image Credit : scpr