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First International Conference on Diving for Persons with Disabilities in Taiwan

The first international conference on Diving for Persons with Disabilities was held in Taiwan from 23rd to 25th of September 2017, under the auspices of The League for Persons with Disabilities (R.O.C.). Despite the fact that the diving of persons with disabilities in Taiwan did not begin until 2014, Mr. Lu Hung-Wen, president of the R.O.C. is aware that the transfer of knowledge and experience is a very important matter. It is therefore not surprising, that the very first conference was set up very widely and the organizers invited representatives of all possible existing disabilities and representatives of various organizations from different countries: Taiwan Disability Scuba Diving Association, IAHD Adriatic from Slovenia, Society of People Support People Malaysia, and International Association of Hand-In Hand Divers Hong Kong.
Members of the delegation from Slovenia were: Branko Ravnak, president of IAHD Adriatic and member of the CMAS Disabled Diving Commission, as a lecturer, Nevenka Richter Pece, a treasury of IAHD Adriatic and Alenka Fidler, Secretary General of IAHD Adriatic.
- Implementing CRPD through the Promotion of Disability Recreation, Sports and Policy-making
Wang Jung-Chang, legislator, The League for Persons with Disabilities (R.O.C.)
- Strategies of Promoting Barrier free Recreation Area in Taiwan
Ko, Chien-Hsing, Director of Domestic Tourism Division of Tourism Bureau, Ministry of Transportation and Communications
- Experience on promotion of scuba diving for people with disabilities
Daniel Yau, Secretary, International Association of Hand-In-Hand Divers (Hong Kong)
Chen, Ke-Chen CMAS Course Director & Chief Coach, Taiwan
- The effects of »IDA Method« in therapeutic and recreational SCUBA diving for persons after Spinal Cord Injury
Branko Ravnak, IAHD Adriatic, president
- Assessment of Fitness To Diving For Persons With Disabilities
Kun-Lun Huang, National Defence Medical Center Graduate Institute of Aerospace and Undersea Medicine
The experiences sharing of persons with disabilities on diving
- How Scuba Diving helps me to tackle dyslexia and ADHD
Geoffrey Yau, International Association of Hand-In-Hand Divers (Hong Kong)
- My Journey
Ling, Wang Ming, Executive Committee, Society of People Support People Malaysia (PSP)
- From Self-fulfillment to Disabled Diving Promotion
Huang, Jen-Yung, Chief diver, Taiwan Disability Scuba Diving Association
- Panel Discussion
Branko Ravnak presented the organizations that are engaged in diving persons with disabilities all over the world, the possibilities offered by therapeutic and recreational diving for persons with disabilities, various sports disciplines for certified divers with disabilities. The largest emphasis was on the presentation of the IDA method, through which persons with disabilities can safely and effectively make their first steps in an environment without gravity and take advantage of all the effects that the water offers. The IDA method is the result of fifteen years of development and as such represents one of the new tools in modern hydrotherapy.
The conference was very well organized. For foreign participants, care was taken by translator Howard Chien, who prepared English-language material in a printed and digital version. The organizers provided good care participants with different types of disabilities. For accessibility for physically disabled, for deaf and hard of hearing people, and for instant transcription of speech to the projection, was exemplary. The organizers also provided for numerous accompanying activities and participants with little surprises.
During the conference, we stayed at the DiveCube Hotel in Taichung, where the deepest pool in Asia is located. We were surprised over the rational utilization of rooms in the hotel, and even more over the 21 m deep pool, part of which also includes an underwater artificial cave system. The hotel is well-prepared for foreigner’s guests and has all the documents required for diving, translated into English. The participant´s meeting dinner was held in the wonderful ambient of the hotel in the city center with an amazing view of the city, delicious food and for us unusual karaoke, which are very popular among Taiwanese.
The participant´s meeting dinner was held in the wonderful ambient of the hotel in the city center with an amazing view of the city, delicious food and for us unusual karaoke, which are very popular among Taiwanese.
We do not know Taiwan as a diving destination, as we have not yet seen documentary films or underwater photographs from this part of the world. That is why diving in the Kenting National Park in the south of the country, where we all went on Monday morning, was a real surprise. Kenting is a paradise for marine biologists. The conditions for diving are good, as the water temperature is 27 degrees Celsius. The Coral Gardens are completely undamaged which is compared to diving destinations around the world a bright exception, and balm for the diving soul. The wildlife community is very diverse, but it is severely affected by excessive fishing.
Taiwan will remain in our memory as a pure and orderly land of normal laws and rules, simple, full of wonderful people, who are creative and friendly and as a country, where you can meet volunteers on every corner.
Thanks to the organizers for extraordinary hospitality.
Thanks to Mr. and Miss. Fang in one person for immense patience and kindness.
Thanks to Eva, Margaret, Fang, Constance, and others who enabled us to visit and admire the hidden pearls of Taiwan, which without them, would remain hidden for us forever.
Photo IAHD Adriatic





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