Compass School at sea

Newsletter

OYT South bulletin 1st May 2015

In this Bulletin

Sections which have changed since last time marked *  


* Voyage news
Last week’s bulletin left a crew of young people from three local schools, plus one individual booking, in Yarmouth. They sailed back to Southampton later that day and the voyage ended on Saturday with 10 RYA Start Yachting certificates. Big thanks to sea staff Andy, Graeme, Di and Matt as well as special congratulations to Zoe Auckland who passed her third mate’s assessment, and Charlie Chambers who successfully completed his first voyage as bosun and will be back later in the season for some watchleading!

This was followed by a maintenance day - big thanks to Andy and Amy who came for the whole day, as well as the sea staff who helped out later on.

On Monday we were joined by a crew from the Compass School in Southampton, which works with students unable to attend mainstream school for a variety of reasons. Skipper Dougie says Compass is a shining example of how a school can engage with sail training - they really understand how to support a voyage and work with sea staff to ensure that the young people get as much as possible from the experience. Huge thanks to Anne Livesey who is our main contact at the school, plus staff members Emma and Ryan who sailed on the voyage and did an excellent job. They started in Southampton and sailed to Cowes on the first night, anchored in Chichester on Tuesday night; went to Lymington on Wednesday, and yesterday anchored in Stanswood Bay near Calshot before getting back to Ocean Village late last night. Dougie says it was a demanding group but he saw some good helming and some people took a real interest in the pilotage - and the young people did all the radio calls through the week. But perhaps even more than the sailing, the best bits involved young people supporting each other and helping each other, solving problems together. Seven RYA Start Yachting certificates were awarded, including the two school staff. Huge thanks to sea staff Dougie, Rooby, Tigger, Harri and Greg.

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* Sea staff bookings 2015 - vacancies!

Current list of vacancies for the year - can you help with any of the following? Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org NOW if you are interested in any of these:

11-16 May - one more watchleader or bosun - URGENT
11, 13 and 14 June - one more experienced watchleader or bosun for day sails with donors, clients etc. Happy to take someone for the whole period (including 12 June maintenance day), or for one or two days at a time.
26-31 July - 2M for a voyage starting and finishing in Jersey
23-29 August - London to Southampton - 2M needed for voyage with partially-sighted crew
8 Sept - one more watchleader for corporate day sail for a donor
9-12 Sept - one more qualified watchleader
13 Sept - one more experienced watchleader for day sail with donors, clients etc.
18-20 Sept - experienced watchleaders for mates' training weekend
21-25 Sept - 2M, bosun and trainee watchleader.
26-29 Sept - 2M and 3M or trainee mate
30 Sept - 4 Oct - 2M and one more qualified watchleader for ASTO Small Ships Race
5-10 Oct - 2M
12-16 Oct - 2M and additional 3M or trainee mate
16-18 Oct - 2M or 3M for weekend voyage
19-23 Oct - 2M and bosun
23-27 Oct - 2M and experienced bosun
28 Oct - 1 Nov - 2M

This list is changing a lot as people drop in and out, and others are doing assessments or first voyages early in the season which will dictate what they can do later on. There are also voyages where we don't yet know who the client might be and that will affect the levels of experience we might need among the staff. So we may not be able to confirm new bookings straight away, but if you are interested in any of these dates - especially the May and June ones! - please email me now.

Don't forget that any qualified or new trainee mates are also eligible to sail as bosun, and this can be a great way of getting to know the boat and how things work. New volunteers please note that your DBS and Child Protection training must be completed before you can sail in any capacity.

Please send bids or questions to webmaster1@oytsouth.org.

If you are aged 25 or under, please also look at the berths available for young people - there are plenty more spaces available and young volunteers can be treated as an extra member of staff and get training and experience by sailing in a crew berth. Funding help is often available for young people who have been recommended as volunteers and would benefit from the experience so a crew berth may not cost you anything.

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* Calling sea staff and trainee sea staff aged 16-25

We have just been awarded a grant to support extra voyages for young members of sea staff to sail in a crew berth and gain added experience. If you have recently started sailing as bosun or trainee mate, or had a recommendation from the skipper to come back as sea staff, this could be for you! Ideally we want to direct this funding to specific voyages where we need to fill berths and where you could learn a lot - 20-26 June would be one priority (special adventure voyage); but if you can’t do that, look at the rest of the vacancies list below and let me know if you want to apply for a funded place.

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* Swim2Bestival
OYT South is delighted to have been chosen as the nominated charity for Swim2Bestival in 2015 - a lovely group of people are going to raise money for us by swimming across the Solent. On condition that a 55-tonne ketch with a distinctive red hull, erratically steered by teenagers, doesn’t come too close to swimmers’ heads in the water! Please like Swim2Bestival on Facebook or have a look here: http://www.swim2bestival.com/. More news on this epic swim when we have it!

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Poole Harbour Boat Show 9-10 May
On 9th and 10th May, John Laing will be taking part in the Poole Harbour Boat Show. We will be open to the public on both days and we need a good team on board to help show people round - please email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you can help. Otherwise, if you are in the area, do come and say hello! Our Dorset Support Group is doing a great job inviting people to come and visit; but if you know anyone who ought to be introduced to our work as a charity, do let us know about them, or bring them along - potential donors, clients, group organisers, crew members or volunteers!

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* Adult voyage 6-10 June
Is there anyone aged 18+ (no upper limit) who would like to join our adult voyage 6-10 June 2015 - Southampton - 4 nights - £350pp? Ideal for sea staff who want to practise their skills without the pressure of supervising young people at the same time; or for potential new volunteers who want to come along and find out what it’s all about. Also great for small-boat sailors who want the experience of sailing a 55-tonne, 72-foot commercial vessel - or for anyone else who just wants some good sailing in good company. Please bring passports as we may be able to get to France. Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you are interested. And please spread the word among your friends, family and colleagues!

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* Gosport marine festival 13 June - and Gosport Peninsula charity pursuit!
If you might be anywhere near Gosport on 13th June, do come along to the Gosport Marine Festival - John Laing will be there! Details and booking information here and here.

This date will also see the inaugural Gosport Peninsula charity pursuit, a sailing regatta aimed at raising funds for your chosen charity. You could take part with your own vessels, or forward the details to any supporters with yachts who might like to take part. The event is run along similar lines to the successful Eddystone Pursuit out of Plymouth, and awards prizes not for the fastest boat but the crew that has raised the most for charity. The event is organised by Gosport Marine Scene to coincide with the Gosport Marine Festival that will offer free ‘try watersports’ activities to locals. For full details, go to the Gosport Marine Festival website, or contact peter.newell47@btinternet.com with any questions.

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* Berths available for young people

Please spread the word and help us find people who might like to come sailing this year! Bursary funding MAY be available on application for people who can't afford the full voyage fee.

4-8 May - Southampton to Poole - 4 nights - 4 berths available - age 12-25 - £350pp.
11-16 May - Poole to Southampton - 5 nights - 2 berths possibly available - £435pp. Others on this voyage are all aged 15+.
22-24 May - Southampton to Southampton - 2 nights - 7 berths available - age 12-25 - £195pp - half-term weekend!
1-5 June - Southampton to Southampton - 4 nights - 8 berths available - age 12-25 - £350pp.
6-10 June, Southampton to Southampton - 4 nights - adult voyage (age 18+, no upper limit) - £350pp.
20-26 June - Southampton - 6 nights - 7 berths available - £510pp. Special voyage - see below! Passports required.
4-10 July - Poole to Plymouth - 1 berth available - age 12-18 - £510pp. Others in this group are aged 14-17, all have passports and are very keen to cross the Channel if weather allows, so anyone joining this voyage MUST have a passport.
7-12 August - Poole- 5 nights - 1 or 2 berths possibly available tbc - please ask - age 12-25 - £440pp.
13-20 August - Poole to London - 7 nights - 8 berths available - age 12-25 - £575pp.
4-6 Sept -Southampton to Southampton- 2 nights - 12 berths possibly available - please ask - age 12-25 - £195pp.
21-25 Sept -Southampton to Southampton - 4 nights - 12 berths available tbc - please ask - age 12-25 - £350pp.
12-16 Oct -Southampton to Southampton- 4 nights - 11 berths available -age 12-25 - £350pp.
19-23 Oct -Southampton to Southampton- 4 nights - 12 berths available -age 12-25 - £350pp.
28 Oct - 1 Nov -Southampton to Southampton- 4 nights - at least 4 berths available -age 12-25 - £350pp - half-term voyage.

For the full updated voyage programme, see here or here.

Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org with bookings or enquiries.

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Special June adventure voyage for crew members aged 16-25
This voyage was originally advertised for crew members aged 18-25, but following enquiries from one or two 16 and 17-year olds, it has been agreed to make it 16-25 instead. The key message is that everyone is hoping for an adventurous voyage with some really good sailing, so it would be perfect for anyone with an adventurous spirit. Perhaps not the ideal first voyage for a nervous novice....

20-26 June - Southampton - 6 nights - 7 berths available - £510pp.

This trip has been half-filled by Hull York Medical School's Wilderness Medicine Society, who say: “We're all hardy outdoorsy types and would like to cover a lot of miles which might mean some slightly tough sailing, and trying to get somewhere interesting (France/Channel Islands) if the conditions are right! All the crew so far are keen to get their competent crew certificates, and a 7-day voyage is a good chance to do this without having to squeeze it in. Being into wilderness and survival, we'd maybe like to do a little bit more man overboard recovery practice and some more sea-survival teaching! The voyage starts on Saturday 20th June in Southampton and ends on Friday 26th June in the same place. Cost £510. Who wants to join us?”

Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org for more information.

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Adult voyages
for training and selecting potential new volunteers
Adult voyages in 2015 (18+ with no upper limit) are:

6-10 June 2015 - Southampton - 4 nights - age 18+. £350pp.
18-20 Sept 2015 - Southampton - 2 nights - age 18+. £195pp.

If you are interested in doing a voyage with a view to seeing whether you might enjoy volunteering with us, we strongly recommend the longer voyage. With a group of potential new volunteers on board, there just isn't time in a weekend for everyone to have a go at leading exercises such as sail hoists; but the longer voyage gives you time both to learn and then lead every exercise which you would have to do if you come back as a watchleader. Also the longer voyage allows for plenty of great sailing: where you go depends on the weather and on what people want: France, the Channel islands, the west country?

This is the route into sailing as a volunteer if you are aged over 25. If you are aged 18-25 then you can choose whether to aim for your volunteer’s recommendation on an adult voyage or on any standard youth voyage - just book a voyage from the list but make sure you tell your watchleader when you join the boat that you are hoping to earn a sea staff recommendation - they may be able to give you some extra responsibilities and training during the voyage. This may be a better option than an adult voyage for many potential volunteers in the 18-25 range as we get to see how you work with other young people from the outset.

Adults who are not looking to join our sailing volunteers are welcome to join any of these voyages, just to enjoy the sailing.

Please email webmaster1@oytsouth.org to book.

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* Adult day sails
Each year OYT South runs a few adult day sails. These are designed so that current or potential sponsors and donors can see the boat in action and find out what we do; teachers and youthworkers who are sending young people can experience life on board, which helps them do better follow-up work after a young person has sailed; potential clients can get to know us; and volunteers and supporters who are not sea staff and therefore don't often get to sail can have a day on board. Basically anyone who is a current or potential supporter of the charity in any way can talk to us about places on day sails. If you would like to come or can suggest someone else we should invite, please email webmaster1@oytsouth.org. Dates this year are:

Sat 2 May - Solent day sail (start and finish Southampton) - 1 place left
Sun 3 May - Solent day sail (start and finish Southampton) - provisionally full though we can take names for a reserve list in case anyone drops out
Sun 14 June - Solent day sail (start and finish Gosport)
Sat 18 July - day sail (start and finish Plymouth)
Sun 19 July - day sail (start and finish Plymouth)
Sun 13 Sept - Solent day sail (start and finish Southampton)

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* Maintenance days - next one Sunday 17th May

We were desperately short of help on the last maintenance day - PLEASE put these dates in your diary and come and help on any of them if you possibly can!

John Laing's planned maintenance days for 2015 are as follows
Sunday 17 May - Southampton
Friday 12 June - Gosport
Saturday 11 July - Plymouth
Monday 7 Sept - Southampton
Sunday 11 October - Southampton.

Call the boat phone 07990 518915 a few days beforehand so the skipper can plan jobs and buy food for everyone who is coming. All over-18s welcome - skilled and unskilled, there are jobs for everyone. If you are aged 16 or 17, then check with the skipper - we'll generally have you at maintenance days if we can but it slightly depends on who is there and what needs doing.

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* Financial appeal

Huge thanks this week to the estate of the late Cherry Davis for a very generous donation. It means a huge amount to us when someone remembers OYT South in their will - please do think of us if you are writing yours!

We need a regular flow of funds to cover at least three major areas: bursaries for young people who could not otherwise afford to sail; vessel maintenance and equipment; and staff salaries - please help, or pass on our details to anyone you come across who might make a grant, large or small.

See here  for how to make a donation - you can contribute by cheque, phone or PayPal, but please do something if you possibly can. Don't forget that if you complete and return a Gift Aid form we can claim back tax on your donation.

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Child Protection and Food Hygiene ttraining

All sailing volunteers must have done some Child Protection training (updated every three years) before booking any voyage.

If you have done a course in the last three years, please email us with the name of the course, the awarding body, and the date of the training, and we'll add that to your records.

If you still need training, we recommend Child Protection in Sport and Active Leisure which you can do very cheaply online and in your own time. It's not complicated or time-consuming - you should be able to complete it in a couple of hours and some people are getting through it much faster.

The online training page not only gives OYT South members access to child protection training at the bargain price of £10: that single one-off payment gives you access to a range of recommended courses. This includes Food Hygiene: we are moving towards making this a compulsory qualification for all sea staff so we STRONGLY RECOMMEND that people get on and do it before the start of the season! If you already have a food hygiene certificate that we don't know about, please email a copy to the office and we will add it to your records.

The system for these online courses is very straightforward - each course is broken into a number of short modules and you just have to read each module and then answer some questions about it. You can save a course at any point and come back later to where you left off. They are all recognised courses and you will get a certificate for each one you complete successfully. We can see at a glance who has signed up and who has completed a course.

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OYT South clothing range
OYT South clothing - hoodies, t-shirts, polo shirts, fleeces, caps, ties and more - is all available through this webpage. A donation will be made to OYT South for every item they sell.

The Slam jackets (which you may have seen sea staff wearing) are also available but they are cheaper in bulk, so they aren't on the webpage just now - if you wanted to order one, email webmaster1@oytsouth.org. If we only order one or two, they will cost £110 plus postage, but this will be cheaper if we can order five or more at the same time.

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Raise And Sail - website for anyone looking to raise money to come sailing
OYT South has recently launched Raise And Sail, a new website full of ideas, information and support for young people who would like to raise money in order to come sailing with us. Huge thanks to Fiona Keen and Emma Burrows for putting Raise And Sail together. We hope you will find it useful - let us know how you get on as we can add success stories and new ideas to the site in due course.

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Online navigation training for volunteers and young people
For some time now OYT South has been offering basic navigation training through the RYA's Essential Navigation & Seamanship course. Now for those of you who want something a little more advanced, one of our relief skippers, Simon Jinks, is offering online distance learning systems for the theory courses for Day Skipper, Coastal/Yachtmaster and Yachtmaster Ocean. Simon is a great sailor and a top instructor so this is very highly recommended. He is very generously offering a 15% discount for OYT South members and volunteers, so do mention your role with us if you get in touch. Details here. He is also offering a one-day Weather for Sailors course. Please note that Simon's website also includes Essential Navigation and the PPI course, both of which OYT South can offer in-house.

Simon has also very kindly offered one course a year as a prize for a promising member of sea staff who genuinely can't afford to get their next qualification. If you are really keen to climb the sea staff ladder and hoping to do lots of sailing with us, email us or talk to the skipper on your next voyage to see if you can enter for this prize.

With our own courses and Simon's we now have navigation courses to suit everyone from total beginners right up to the most advanced level - please give it a go and do ask for advice if you are not sure which course is right for you.

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Keep in touch with other John Laing people
We have tried a number of social networking websites to allow crew members to keep in touch with the boat and with each other - Facebook is by far the most active and popular, so that’s the one that now gets updated regularly. People can swap stories, post photos and more. For some overseas voyages, we will even set up online groups well in advance, restricted only to people who will actually be sailing on that particular voyage, so that people can compare travel plans and arrange to travel together. See here for how to join.

Please note that OYT South has a policy that our adult staff and volunteers should not make or accept individual online friend requests with crew members aged under 18. Young crew members can use the sites to stay in touch with the boat and with each other, but not with individual adults.

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Survey - tell us what you think
If you have recently completed a voyage, please help us by filling in our web-based survey. It really helps - we use the data to keep improving our voyages, and to help us raise funds!

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New readers' welcome and introduction
If you have recently registered your interest in OYT South, welcome to our e-newsletter, which is sent out almost every week, normally on a Friday. It includes a wide range of news from the boat and from the charity, including details of voyages available for young people; adult voyages; opportunities for adult volunteers both ashore and afloat, and much more. We find that while some people read the bulletin almost every week, many others dip in and out, and read it when it's convenient - which is why some items are repeated. The new items are marked with an asterisk * so that if you did read it last week, you can see which sections you can safely skip.

Please feel free to join in any OYT South activities - nothing here is restricted to long-standing members or people who already know one another. New people are always very welcome!

If you need an introduction to the work of OYT South, you should find a lot of useful information on our website. But essentially, we are a registered charity (no. 1079959) which exists to offer adventure under sail as a personal development opportunity for young people aged 12-25, from the widest possible range of backgrounds. A high proportion of our young crew members are disadvantaged or deserving in some way: many of these sail in groups organised by other charities, youth clubs, special schools and so on, and will fill the bulk of our term-time voyages. But those from more fortunate backgrounds are also welcome to sail, either in groups or by coming as individuals on a mixed voyage. Every year we run a variety of shorter local voyages plus longer adventure trips - sometimes including Tall Ships races during the summer holidays. If you are aged 12-25 and hoping to sail as a crew member, take a look here - and this section is also useful for adults who are thinking of organising a voyage for a young person. Adults planning to organise a full group voyage should also see here. Adults who want to sail themselves should see here.

We have a professional staff skipper and bosun, but our watch leaders are normally all volunteers, who combine sailing skills with an interest in working with young people. You can find more information here - how the system works, how to join, and profiles of existing staff and volunteers.  

To volunteer for OYT South ashore, please see here. To help with the vessel's annual refit, or with maintenance days spread throughout the year, see here.

It is a very expensive business maintaining a boat, running an office and employing staff. If you want to help us, please become a member of OYT South. Or see here for information on making a donation.

If you have any questions, please do email - or contact the office.

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“To be honest I never wanted to come, but I'm glad I did because I have learnt and seen so much!" Charlotte

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