Great crews from George Green's school and Outdoor Lads charity

Newsletter

OYT South bulletin 25th July 2018

In this Bulletin
Sections which have changed since last time marked *


* High Sheriff of Dorset event
OYT South has been very fortunate that the current High Sheriff of Dorset, Jackie Swift, is a great friend to the charity, and last week she hosted a reception on board Prolific in Poole which brought not only a number of dignitaries from Dorset but also a wide range of people whom she wanted to introduce to OYT South. This included schools, other charities and all sorts of people who might be interested in referring young people or supporting the charity in other ways. The whole evening was a huge success, with Prolific looking at her best and the weather and the views across Poole Town Quay and the harbour all co-operating to make it a spectacular venue for a party. We met lots of lovely people who showed a keen interest in working with OYT South and we have been in touch with many of them since the event to follow up plenty of ideas. Huge thanks to Jackie and Allen Swift and also to all the staff and volunteers who did such a great job of getting the boat ready and then of chatting to the guests and ensuring that the evening went smoothly: Mark Todd, Andy Bristow, Lee Mosscrop, Adam Lane, Louise Roy, Josh Caudery, Vicky Inglis, Charles Smith, Brian Eyres, Martyn Powe, Jon Seddon, Glyn Collins, Holly Vint, Clara Theil and Caz.

This picture shows Jackie, the High Sheriff, with the Mayor of Poole and our Chief Executive Mark Todd:

Dorset High Sheriff and Mayor of Poole

And this picture shows Mark with the Chief Constable and Chief Fire Officer, trying to make sure everyone goes home with the correct hat:

Dorset Chief Constable and Chief Fire Officer

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* Voyage news
The last newsletter ended with us just starting a voyage for George Green’s, a comprehensive school on the Isle of Dogs in Tower Hamlets. George Green, the school’s founder, was a 19th century shipbuilder and shipwright and the school has maintained a maritime connection ever since. Currently, 76% of students at George Green’s receive Pupil Premium support compared to 29% nationally - this is the additional government payment to support students who are statistically less likely to be successful at school (e.g. those on free school meals, in care or carers). The school is very mixed and the proportion of students who speak English as an additional language is well above the national average. The ten students and one adult leader selected for this voyage came from such diverse origins and family backgrounds that it became a really positive feature of the voyage, because it was such a delight to see how well they bonded as a group, so at the end of the trip everyone volunteered to go round the table saying where their families had come from, and we made a note:

•           Half Asian, half Israeli
•           Half Pakistani, half Bengali
•           Kosovo
•           Somalia
•           Mum from Poland
•           Equatorial Guinea and also Spanish
•           Brazil
•           Bangladesh
•           Parents from Turkey, originally Kurdish
•           Swiss Italian
•           Russia

The group joined the boat in Poole on Thursday 12th July.  Many had never even seen the sea at close quarters but what a fabulous crew they turned out to be!  The group arrived on the boat with an appetite for an adventure so once key safety briefings were out of the way, Prolific departed Poole; initially for dinner at anchor off Swanage and then, after a very brief doze, weighing anchor at midnight for an 18 hour passage to Falmouth. The teamwork and the enthusiasm the whole group showed for hoisting the mainsail for the first time in the dark and then standing watches through the night (and day) was particularly impressive. After a run ashore for true Cornish ice-creams and overnighting at a buoy in Falmouth, the crew found themselves an almost deserted ‘secret’ Cornish beach (near Dodman Point), dropped anchor and went ashore by dinghy for beach games and exploring the rock pools.  That evening was spent in Salcombe.

On route back to Poole the next day, as dolphins swam at Prolific’s bow, there was a consensus amongst the crew that they would capture the boat (and sea staff) and sail off for ever. A member of the crew who came from Somalia even suggested we could phone the office and school and claim that Prolific had been captured by Somali pirates so couldn’t come back! After dinner at anchor again in Studland, Prolific was safely navigated and steered back into Poole in the dark by the young people themselves working together magnificently in their watch groups to plot, spot and navigate the buoys and steer Prolific safely home after 288 nautical miles.

The skipper said: “Without wishing to be too profound, with ten youngsters coming from ten different countries of family origin, working so effectively and enthusiastically together as a team and showing such respect, understanding and compassion for each other and for the maritime environment around them, perhaps there really is some hope for the world. This group of young people really was a delight to sail with. They bonded well as a team and were admirably mutually supportive. From the outset, they demonstrated an enthusiasm for an adventure and all the hardship that might entail (i.e. overnight sailing, working watches 24/7 and the routine necessary for operating a yacht at sea for extended periods). They could have chosen a simpler and less demanding itinerary and the fact that we did so much really was their choice. As one, the group opted with enthusiasm to sail further afield than other voyages of similar duration. They therefore sailed overnight on the first night with some long days thereafter. Not once did the young people complain about standing watches through the night, or some very early starts. They were quick to volunteer for unpopular tasks such as cooking, washing up and cleaning the boat. They needed little or no supervision for such tasks.  Many of the group exhibited considerable maturity and common sense, and all of them showed a significant respect for each other’s requirements that was out of the ordinary in my experience.  As a whole, the group were fun, keen to learn and commendably observant and selflessly respectful of each other’s needs. This was a fantastic group of young people who deserve to be really proud of their achievements and themselves.  We hope to see them, and other groups from George Green's School, back in the future.”

All the young people earned Royal Yachting Association Start Yachting Certificates. Big thanks to sea staff Andy Bristow, Lee Mosscrop, Adam Lane, Josh Caudery, Vicky Inglis and Charles Smith, and special congratulations to Louise Roy who completed her second mate’s assessment and Jon Oxenham who was signed off as a third mate!

The next voyage was for a crew from Outdoor Lads, a charity which enables gay, bisexual and trans men to take part in outdoor activities. They joined on Tuesday last week in Poole with a forecast of very light winds all week - that first night looked at the time like potentially the only good winds of the voyage so they set off on a long night passage westwards, initially with 25-knot gusts and lumpy seas. The wind died overnight but a combination of sailing and motoring got Prolific to Cawsand Bay, near Plymouth, on Wednesday afternoon in time for a run ashore and a look around. We were then visited by no fewer than three of our relief skippers who are based in the area: Andy Brown, Andy Bristow and Nic Crawford along with Jen/Phoebe whom many people will remember as a former watchleader and refit volunteer, plus her family!

Next morning there was time for some rowing and training for RYA qualifications before setting off mid-morning in a forecast of very light winds which actually turned out to be a steady force 3 in just the right direction. They initially aimed for Fowey but the sailing was so glorious in the sunshine that they kept going all the way to Falmouth. Skipper Mark says this was just one of several days on this voyage when “sailing just doesn’t get any better”. They arrived in Falmouth in the evening, tied up to a buoy, and had some shore leave.

On Friday they had an early start and another lovely passage, arriving in Fowey in the early afternoon - another stunning location with shore leave and time on the beach. Saturday was much the same, this time to Salcombe. Sunday morning was more time on the beach and in the town.

In all these places Prolific was flying the Pride flag which attracted plenty of interest and gave the Outdoor Lads team a chance to talk about their charity.

Prolific with Pride flag

Up the mast

The final passage to Brixham was yet another awesome sail with the mizzen staysail up and dolphins around the boat. Josh went up the mast to shoot a video which you can see here:



It might have been tempting to keep sailing in such glorious conditions but the tremendous welcome from MDL’s Brixham marina made up for having to bring the voyage to an end - they came out to welcome Prolific and really couldn’t have been more helpful and friendly. We are going to be based in Brixham from now until the end of August and it’s great to be made to feel so much at home!

The Outdoor Lads crew left on Monday with 11 RYA Competent Crew certificates and a number of sea staff recommendations. Big thanks to this week’s sea staff Mark, Martyn, Holly, Josh, Jon, Clara and special congratulations to Glyn Collins who completed a second mate’s assessment.

That night there was an evening sail for sea staff, friends and family, but also including Andrew Millar, the Brixham marina manager. During the sail there was a call from the coastguard asking if Prolific could look for a broken-down RIB with two people on board and only a mobile phone. They were found just as dusk was falling and towed into Brixham.

We have also had some other visits to the boat including from Peter Hunt, a marine photographer and friend of Colin Baxter, the marine artist based near our Gosport office. Peter took some great shots of Prolific which have been shared on Facebook here.

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* DRAFT 2019 sailing programme
A draft of our 2019 sailing programme is available here. It shows where clients have already been in touch to request specific dates, and voyages that have been reserved for them, but otherwise the rest of the programme is still available - but not by any means set in stone: we are still happy to discuss changes of dates, ports and durations to suit clients, if we can do so without causing major problems for anyone else or leaving too many unused, wasted days between voyages, which would cost us money.

As you will see, we are planning a fairly standard programme in spring and autumn, but we have given a lot of thought to our summer plans. We considered doing the Tall Ships race series next year (Norway and Denmark) but some of the voyages are long enough that we couldn't realistically offer them for under £1,000 per head plus flights, which we know will always be very difficult for clients; the delivery legs to the start, in term-time, also looked challenging to sell; and the programme would have left us with no local voyages in school summer holidays, which would have been hard on anyone who can't afford overseas travel. So, instead, the draft programme is offering an option of voyages in and around Brittany in July - a glorious cruising area which is generally just out of reach on a regular-length voyage starting and finishing in the UK, but with options for affordable travel, and still allowing us to get back for UK voyages in August for those who need. However, a number of our clients are concerned about travel costs even for Brittany so we may yet decide to reduce or even cancel the Brittany period. So if you fancy sailing in Brittany next year, especially if you can organise a group booking or just bring a few friends, please get in touch NOW while we are still developing the programme - but likewise, if your group would much prefer a UK-based voyage at that time of year, please let us know now!

If you would like to make a booking or discuss programme alternations at any point in the 2019 season, please email caroline.white@oytsouth.org.

Please note that we are NOT looking for volunteer sea staff bids yet!

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* New job for OYT South trustee
We are delighted that OYT South trustee Lesley Robinson has just taken up a new role as Chief Executive with British Marine. Lesley says: “I am excited to be taking on this new role and look forward to working for and with British Marine members to help secure a healthy future for our marine industry.”Congratulations from all at OYT South - especially since the new role doesn’t prevent her remaining on our Board!

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* Volunteer bookings for 2018 voyages – NEW vacancies

Sea staff berths not currently filled are as follows - please note that dates are when young people are on board, and volunteers will generally be expected to join the day before. Some of these places could ideally use another qualified watchleader or bosun; others may be suitable for trainee sea staff - please ask.

Please email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you are available.

NEW 28 Aug - 2 Sept - Brixham to Southampton. This voyage needs a young person aged 16-25 sailing as bosun - ideally someone who has sailed in this role before, or someone who has recently earned a sea staff recommendation and perhaps has been involved in helping out with things like the daily engine checks.
3-7 Sept
- Southampton - Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust voyage. This staff berth is only available to male volunteers aged under 25 owing to the need to share the same accommodation space as some of the clients.
16 Sept - Southampton - one or two more sea staff needed for adult day sail
17-21 Sept (including maintenance day) - Southampton - pupil referral unit which always brings outstanding staff to support young people who may have some complex issues. One staff berth possibly available tbc.
NEW 22 Sept- Southampton - one or two more sea staff needed for NEW adult day sail
8-12 Oct - Southampton - pupil referral unit
15-19 Oct - Southampton - client tbc but may be a mainstream school group
24-28 Oct - Southampton - East London charity

Sea staff under 25 please note that you can ALSO apply for any empty berths on individual voyages - if we can't fill all berths with paying customers or disadvantaged young people with bursary funding, then it's often much better to include you than to have an empty, wasted berth - and you can still be treated as an extra volunteer and continue with your training.

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* 2018 voyage programme - availability for young people

Please see here for a 2018 sailing programme. At the moment there is a maximum of 15 berths possibly still available for young people this year (including some where we are have provisional bookings and we are waiting to see if they will be confirmed), out of more than 400 on the full programme, with most voyages already fully-booked! But please keep watching this space as we can get cancellations, or groups which don't quite fill all their spaces and are happy to open their voyage up to others.

There is ONE LAST voyage which currently has spaces for individual bookings:

9-15 August - 6 nights - starting and finishing in Brixham, age range 12-25, £550 per person. 2 or 3 berths available.

The following voyage is possibly still open for group bookings (up to 12 places) though we have had a provisional enquiry from a school - we can keep a reserve list in case it isn’t confirmed for any reason:

15-19 Oct - 4 nights - Southampton - £385 per person

Contact the office to book, or to enquire about other availability for individual or group bookings.

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* Adult voyages and volunteer training and selection voyages in 2018
We have one more adult training weekend and one longer adult voyage scheduled for 2018:

7-9 Sept 2018 (8pm Friday to 5pm Sunday) - Southampton - 2 nights - £200pp. At least two spaces available. Age range is 16+ but any 16 and 17 year olds must have sailed with us before and earned a sea staff recommendation. Adults on this weekend must have had a DBS check.
10-15 Sept 2018 (2pm Monday to 12 noon Saturday) - Southampton - 5 nights - age 18+. £480pp

These voyages would be ideal either for current volunteers who want more experience in Prolific, or for other adults who may be new to the charity and would like to get to know us, our boat and the way we work before considering joining our volunteer team.

The weekend will be really useful for current volunteers as we aim to do some intensive training with sails up and down, reefs in and out, often enough to give plenty of people a chance to run each exercise. We're also hoping to look at man overboard recovery and search patterns.

The longer voyage is perhaps more suitable for people who want to get to know us and see how we operate as we can show you everything that would normally happen on a youth voyage.

Anyone wanting to sail as a volunteer on our youth voyages must be recommended as suitable by our skipper, and while under-25s can earn their recommendation on a standard youth voyage, these training voyages are the opportunity for adult potential volunteers to decide whether you like what we do and hopefully earn your recommendation! Voyage prices include a year's annual membership so there is no further cost for anyone returning as a volunteer in the subsequent 12 months. See here for more details on joining the team.

If the only thing putting you off doing an adult training voyage is the cost, please do email webmaster1@oytsouth.org as we may be able to arrange bursary funding - especially for people who can sail regularly and might have the potential to reach second mate standard or above reasonably quickly.

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Prolific
maintenance days - help needed
Prolific has in-season maintenance days scheduled as follows - please come along if you can.

Wednesday 8th August - Brixham
Monday 17th September – Southampton

Help always welcome - skilled or unskilled! Food provided on board; and we can sometimes offer accommodation for the night before or after a maintenance day. Email refit@oytsouth.org or phone 07990 518915 if you can help with any of these dates.

Maintenance helpers should normally be aged 18+ though it may sometimes be possible to include 16 and 17 year olds - especially those who are training as bosuns - with the skipper's permission. Please ask!

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Winter refit core team needed

We haven’t yet finalised plans for Prolific’s winter refit 2018-19, but if you are planning a gap year, or you are between jobs or for any other reason potentially available for several weeks or months this winter, might you be interested in joining our full-time refit team? We may well need a couple of full-time volunteers between November and March. More details here. Plenty of our previous refit volunteers have gone on to great jobs in the marine industry - it really helps to have maintenance experience as well as good sailing skills when applying for sailing jobs! And any refit volunteers who want to sail in Prolific can be offered berths as watchleaders, bosuns, or relief engineers. So it’s a great way of developing useful experience, contributing to a good cause, securing free food and accommodation for a few months, and having a positive experience with a fun group of people! So if you’re interested, please read the web page and email us with the details requested at the bottom of the page.

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Winter refit accommodation needed in the Southampton area
Prolific will be based in Southampton this winter and one of the major jobs this year is the complete replacement of the electrical system. This will be a long job and as it won’t be possible for our staff and volunteers to live on board while the boat has no power, we are looking for a house to rent or other ideas for nearby accommodation. Ideally we’d like to have at least three bedrooms and room for at least four people between November and March. It can be very difficult to find anything suitable through local letting agents, so if anyone has ideas or can help us through a private arrangement, please email refit@oytsouth.org.

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Leaflets about OYT South
We have done some updates to some of our publicity material and there are leaflets here which you can print - please do use them to spread the word among anyone who might be tempted to sail with us, volunteer for us or support us in any way.

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Online fundraising - Amazon Smile, and one volunteer’s story about Easyfundraising - raise money with minimal effort! 

OYT South is now registered with Amazon Smile which makes donations to us when people shop - Amazon will donate 0.5% of the net purchase price on eligible purchases. If you ever shop with Amazon, do have a look - once you pick Ocean Youth Trust South as your chosen charity and start using https://smile.amazon.co.uk, you don’t need to do anything further, and all your other Amazon account settings remain unchanged.

We also receive donations through Easyfundraising - this one works for all sorts of online shopping, not just a single site like Amazon. One of our volunteers says “I booked a Citybreak weekend away on Expedia and car parking on Holiday Extras through Easyfundraising and that produced £18.28 for OYT South at zero cost to me.” Easyfundraising says: "It doesn't cost you a penny extra. When you shop the easyfundraising way with one of our 3,241 shops and sites they give us a commission for your purchase. We turn that into a donation and give it to your good cause. Easy!"

If all our supporters got into the habit of raising money for us when shopping online, it would soon mount up. If you can persuade your friends and family to do it, even better. And if you work for a business which spends significant sums online, who knows how much you could raise?

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Vessel tracking
Don’t forget you can always have a look and see where Prolific is sailing.

If you discover she is in a harbour somewhere near you, please go and say hello. If we’re not too busy with activities with young people, then visitors are generally welcome. You can always call the boat beforehand (07990 518915) to see if there is time for a visit - and sometimes you may be just what we need if you have local information or a bit of time to spare to help with something, or a car for running a quick errand!

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Sea staff training material - NEW and updated!
There is a lot of revised and updated content in the Sea Staff section of the website (email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you don’t have a password). This includes an updated version of the Voyage Handbook (sometimes known as the baboon file) which covers a huge range of the activities on board, from sail hoists through to muster stations in emergencies. There’s still more to do on this document but there is plenty of new stuff based on our experience of sailing Prolific last season, so do have a look. The text is colour-coded so you can see exactly what is new.

Also on the same webpage are new revised videos on the fire system; the fire pump; the bilge pump and the anchor windlass; as well as revised versions of sea staff assessment forms and more.

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Chris Ellis Award - win up to £500
If you enjoy a voyage with OYT South and want to come again next year (and are aged 12-25), please think about entering for this award. You can win up to £500 off the price of another voyage, by sending in an account of a voyage you have already done with us. It can be a logbook, diary, story, pictures, video - anything which gives the judges an idea of why you had a good time and would like to come again. The prize is judged at the end of each season and the award can be spent on a voyage the following year. Entries should be emailed to webmaster1@oytsouth.org  or posted to the office to arrive by Christmas. See here for more details of this award, which was set up in memory of the charity's founder. You can also see some previous winning entries.

The 2018 Chris Ellis Award is now open for entries.

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Financial appeal
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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RYA courses with SeaRegs

Occasional OYT South relief skipper Simon Jinks's company SeaRegs is now offering RYA practical coursers on a regular basis. This year they have a monthly programme of both Sail and Power Yachtmaster weeks and Day Skipper weeks, as well as both classroom based and online theory courses. A 10% discount is available for booking both a theory course and a practical course.

Contact Vicky Jinks admin@searegs.co.uk if you are interested - please DON'T reply to the OYT South staff via the bulletin for this one!

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2018 AGM - a date for your diary
A long way off but you might like to make a note that our 2018 AGM will be on Saturday 3rd November - it will probably involve the usual curry night and we may well also be encouraging people to come that weekend to unload masses of kit from Prolific.

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Colin Baxter prints and postcard of Prolific for sale
We have a limited number of A4 prints and postcards of Prolific by the renowned marine artist Colin Baxter for sale - postcards cost £1 each and prints £6 each, including postage and packaging. Email molliecrawford@oytsouth.org to order.


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Branded clothing
OYT South branded clothing available - please see here. You can buy hoodies (in a wide range of colours), fleeces, short- and long-sleeved t-shirts, baseball caps, beanie hats, drill shirts, polo shirts and more, all with OYT South's logo!

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From youth crew to volunteer
Have you recently done a voyage as a young crew member, enjoyed it, and been told by the skipper or any of the other sea staff to think about coming back as a volunteer on board? This is how many of our watchleaders and bosuns started, and it’s a great opportunity for getting years of very cheap sailing, plus something impressive to add to your CV, college or job applications. If you start volunteering with us and do well, you could gain invaluable experience in leading and motivating teams, looking after safety issues, taking responsibility and more - especially if you end up volunteering on some of our voyages with highly disadvantaged and vulnerable young people.

If you’ve had a recommendation from the skipper, it’s still really up to you to decide whether you are keen and ready to take this step - moving from being a young crew member who can be looked after and supported by the sea staff, into a position of responsibility where you will be looking after other people and responsible for helping to deliver a successful voyage to others, and accepting that this can involve hard work - though we hope our volunteers also have plenty of fun! Junior volunteers will still get support and advice from more experienced sea staff, but you really have to be ready to get stuck in when there are things to do and your effort can help make the difference to keeping the boat working smoothly and ensuring that another group of young people has the best possible experience!

But the next stage is really up to you. There are plenty of young people who impress us on voyages each year, but the ones who get to come back for more voyages, training and qualifications are the ones who show a real interest and make the effort to keep in touch - we simply don’t have the time to chase all of you individually if we don’t hear from you. Reading this weekly newsletter is vital - you will see when we are advertising for trainee mates or bosuns, or offering courses, or asking for help with maintenance or other events. You may also sometimes see that we have a short-notice vacancy for a crew berth - if we can’t fill the place with a paying customer, offering it as a cut-price or even free place to a new potential volunteer whom we know will be an asset to the team is much better than sailing with an empty berth. So if you are keen, PLEASE read the bulletin and don’t be afraid to reply and ask questions - if you’re not sure whether an opportunity is suitable for you or not, or if there might be age restrictions, just ask. We really do want to hear from you!

If you read this newsletter regularly, you will see that the key period for sending in bids for volunteer berths tends to be November to early January. Every year we get a few people who haven't read the newsletter and don't start thinking about summer sailing until the new year is well underway - only to find that volunteer berths in school and college holidays are already booked up.

And one more thing ... if you are mature enough to be thinking about making the step up into volunteering, then you should really be contacting us yourself. It doesn't quite create the same impression if you get your mum to do it ...!

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Youth Trustee - speaking up for young people

OYT South has a rule that at least one member of the Board of Trustees - which runs the charity - should be in the same age range as the young people who sail with us. The current Youth Trustee is 21-year old student Jack Dignan, who did his first voyage with us a couple of years ago. Jack is in a position to speak up for young crew members, suggest changes in the way the charity operates or to do anything else which will improve the experience of the young people who sail with us. If you are a young person and you have ideas or suggestions for how we can do better, and you want to talk to someone close to your own age, you can contact Jack. If you’re not happy with something and want to know what to do about it, you might want to start by talking to Jack. If you want to get more involved - whether by just doing another voyage, or by training as a volunteer - Jack can point you in the right direction. You can email him at jackdignan@oytsouth.org.

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Raise And Sail - website for anyone looking to raise money to come sailing
Raise And Sail is a section of this 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
OYT South has been offering basic navigation training through the RYA's Essential Navigation & Seamanship course - do have a look and sign up if you want the qualification.

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. 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.

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 OYT South people
We are on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/oytsouth - please do give us a Like! if you were friends with John Laing on our old page (https://www.facebook.com/johnlaingsailing please do move to the new page now.

We are also on Twitter @oytsouth so please follow us!

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 newsletter, which is sent out almost every week, normally on a Friday, and is also copied onto the website.

If you have just started receiving this newsletter by email, it is because we believe you have signed up and consented to receive it - perhaps by emailing us to ask for it, completing a form on our website, or adding your email address to the book on board where people can sign up to receive news, as well as leaving comments. If this was a mistake or you simply decide you want to stop receiving the newsletter, just press “reply” to the email and write UNSUBSCRIBE at the top, or email webmaster1@oytsouth asking to unsubscribe.

Each week the newseltter 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. 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 engineer, 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, 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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