Air cadets at sea

Newsletter

OYT South bulletin 6th September 2019

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


* Day skipper course available

Mark will be running an RYA Day Skipper course 10-15 November - cost £340. This would be ideal for second mates who so far only have the RYA Watchleader certificate, as well as third mates and bosuns and maybe some new volunteers with reasonable sailing experience. The pre-course requirement is 5 days, 100 miles and 4 night hours on board a sailing yacht so most people who have done a voyage with us should have covered this; but you should also have some knowledge of navigation - ideally to the level of Day Skipper theory. If you are interested, email webmaster1@oytsouth.org.

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* Possible sea staff vacancies - can you help?
Due to a few possible cancellations we MAY have a few sea staff vacancies on voyages in October:

7-11 October - another volunteer possibly needed. We've had an offer from someone but it depends whether her paperwork can be completed in time.

14-18 Oct - another volunteer possibly needed.

23-27 Oct - possibly one other volunteer needed.

All dates are when the young people are on board - we generally need volunteers the day before. Ideally we are looking for volunteers who are already in the system with DBS and other paperwork in place - anyone else offering to do these voyages must be in a position to sort out paperwork very quickly or it won't be back in time! Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you can help.

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2020 draft sailing programme
- including possible Tall Ships and Spanish voyages
We have been contacting all our regular clients for their input into our 2020 sailing programme, and although parts of the programme are not yet finalised, we've published the latest draft version here.

You will see that this draft includes some overseas voyages and a Tall Ships race in July and August. We will only go ahead with this part of the programme if we can be confident of filling enough places to make it financially viable - otherwise we will revert to a UK-based programme. We will review bookings and enquiries in the autumn before making a firm decision, so please register now if you are interested. (NB at this stage we are only looking at bookings from young people - NOT sea staff bookings!)

The leg down to Spain and the race from Spain to Dunkirk are twice the length of our standard voyages and therefore relatively expensive. If you would like to take part but can't afford it, please register interest anyway - there is a box on the form to tick if you would like us to contact you if we hear about any funds you may be able to apply for - assuming there are still places left on your chosen voyage at that stage!

Coruna

Coruna

We won't take any firm bookings and payments for overseas voyages until we're sure we have enough interest to go ahead.

If you are interested in a group booking (up to 15 people) or you want to discuss changes to voyage dates, durations or ports to suit your group, please contact caroline.white@oytsouth.org.

For individual bookings, please contact joclark@oytsouth.org who will make a note of your details and availability and let you know when voyage dates are released to individuals. This is because our voyages are divided between group bookings (such as schools) and mixed individual voyages and we need to concentrate individual bookings into a sensible number of voyages - no point ending up with twenty voyages with only two or three people booked on each (not enough to sail the boat). So we will release individual voyages a few at a time once we can start seeing that there is enough interest for the voyage to work. This also gives us a chance to tell people about the likely age range of a voyage before they book - you may not want your 12-year old on a voyage where everyone else is 18!

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* Voyage news

It's been a couple of weeks since the last bulletin so there is lots to report! The last newsletter left Prolific in Plymouth avoiding bad weather. Things eased next day and they were able to sail to Fowey and enjoy time ashore there and lots of games on board. Next morning they followed a racing fleet out of the harbour and then made their way to Portscatho. Then on Monday they had a long downwind sail back to Brixham with lots of gybes and reefs going in and out.

At sea

At sea

The last part of the passage was a night sail, with the moon rising as the sails were dropped. The crew did an excellent clean-up of the boat and there was still time for ice cream before the voyage ended on Tuesday after 200 nautical miles and with 11 young people earning RYA Start Yachting certificates. Big thanks to sea staff Nic, Brigid, Josh, Danny, Will, Susanna and special congratulations to Elise Sauvary who was signed off as a bosun, while Hal Strode is making great progress towards third mate.

The next voyage was very special. Regular readers will remember that Poole Harbour Boat Show worked very hard to raise funds for young people from Dorset to sail with us and we had a big appeal in the spring asking people to nominate exceptionally deserving winners. We were overwhelmed by the quality and number of submissions - lots of young people who have not had the easiest times but who have done really well, in many case making a really positive contribution to their families or communities or putting in immense effort to overcome problems. The first fifteen winners all joined the boat in Brixham and had a beautiful evening sail to Dartmouth that day. In fact the skipper commented that the group as a whole was unusually appreciative of the beauty of the sea and the places they visited – on the way into Dartmouth everyone chose the house they would like to live in! Next day they had a big sail to Cawsand, outside Plymouth, with all the sails up - a bit challenging for some crew members with Prolific heeling to a strong breeze, but seeing loads of dolphins made up for any hardship. Even those who were seasick took pride in getting through it. They anchored for the night, rocked to sleep, and woke next day to thick fog which scuppered plans for an early start as they could barely see from the wheel to the end of the bowsprit! But once things lifted they were able to make their way to Salcombe with the young people getting involved with navigation and using the radar, making fog signals and doing fixes with the handbearing compass.

At sea

At sea

Leaving harbour

In Salcombe they had time ashore for ice cream and a trip to the beach with a game of football, and spent some time rafted alongside another sailing training vessel, Leader, with both crews able to look round each others’ boats. Next day they sailed round to Hope Cove for lunch and fishing, and then back to Brixham for the evening and hot showers – the sail round was memorable for people having an amazing time on the bowsprit watching the dolphins!

This was a final visit to Brixham after a summer in which they could not have done more to look after us and make us feel welcome - huge thanks to Andrew and the rest of the MDL team.

The following day it was the big hit back to Dorset, 70 nautical miles in no wind which could have been dull for the young people but instead they had loads of fun on the way and lots of exercises including fire and abandon ship drills. They went initially to Studland where they enjoyed an incredible sunset and the young people were divided into teams to plan and take charge of the pilotage in darkness into Poole – which they did with an RNLI escort provided by the dad of one of our crew members!

Sunset

They were alongside by 10pm having sailed 174 nautical miles, and next day had the boat clean and ready for the arrival of families for pizza, provided by the Poole team! All in all it was an incredibly successful voyage - the young people should be very proud of themselves (and all 15 earned RYA Start Yachting certificates); everyone who contributed funds should be delighted that it worked so well, and the team in Poole who looked after the organisation and fundraising - especially Tracy, Kerrie and Dave - did an absolutely amazing job and really couldn't have done anything more to make it such a success. Not forgetting our sea staff Mark, Lee, Glyn, Willoughby, Josh, Jonathan and special congratulations to Holly Vint who successfully completed the first stage of a two-part skipper's assessment!

A mixed group of individual bookings joined in Poole for the next voyage - a few who had sailed with us before and several who were new, including the last of this season's Aston Martin apprentices who have all been great additions to their voyages during the year. After introductions and safety briefings had a short, beautiful evening sail to an anchorage in Studland where they enjoyed the sunset before an early night – for a good reason because at 0130, one watch was up again and they set sail across the Channel. They had variable winds but enjoyed good sailing for at least half the crossing. The early start worked out just right for them as they were in perfect time for the favourable tide through the Alderney race and were in Guernsey with plenty of time for showers ashore before dinner. 

At sea

At sea

Early starts were a theme of the week but there were no complaints at all from the young people when the next day’s sailing began at 0400 – they all did incredibly well to get themselves up on deck and joining in.

Early start!

Once again they caught the tide and were moored in Alderney by 0830 and all able to go back to bed for the morning! They got up for lunch and then had the opportunity to spend the whole of the rest of the day on the beach, with games, training towards their certificates and more.

Beach

Next day they had an extravagant lie-in until 0700 and headed back across the Channel in light winds, managing to hoist our cruising chute (sponsored by the Whirlwind Charitable Trust) which, at 300 square metres is considerably bigger than a tennis court (260 sq m).

Cruusing chute

They arrived in Cowes that evening and spent the night on Trinity Landing. They had time ashore, more training towards their qualifications and a chance to plan some challenging navigation: the goal for Saturday was to get our vessel track to write the letters “OYT” in the Solent – a really tricky feat given the tide and the need to keep out of the way of other vessels. 

Solent OYT

Navigation

The young people then navigated Prolific to Ocean Village – back in our home port after two months away in the west country – and the voyage ended next day after 193 nautical miles! Eleven people earned RYA Competent Crew certificates (the other four had the qualification already). Big thanks to sea staff Andy V, Holly, Josh, Georgia, Miranda, Nick and special congratulations to Millie Doodson who successfully completed a third mate's assessment and Maddie Bryan who made great progress as a trainee watchleader.

This week's voyage has been for 1475 Squadron Dulwich Air Cadets. They joined on Monday and spent that night at anchor at the eastern end of Osborne Bay. Next day they headed east out of the Solent and then back all around the south of the Isle of Wight. The wind was stronger than forecast but this was a fantastic group and though many of them found it challenging they really worked hard to get Prolific to Poole for the night.

Air cadets at sea

They had shore leave next morning and hoped to go to Worbarrow Bay the next day but the wind had other plans and they went for the safer option of anchoring in Swanage instead. Some great stories were written during the anchor watches!

Next day they headed back through the Needles under staysail and mizzen to Cowes where they had time for shore leave and navigation planning. They took charge of the navigation back to ocean Village that night - fifteen air cadets working with one of our volunteers, Martyn, who used to be an air traffic controller but between them they did a great job at sea level!

Navigation

The voyage ended today with 13 cadets earning RYA Start Yachting certificates - the other two had the qualification already.

Big thanks to sea staff Andy Brown, Martyn, Allen, Georgia, John, Niamh and very special congratulations to Andy Gissing who successfully completed his First Mate's assessment. This is a really significant achievement as the first mate must be capable of taking over the vessel if the skipper is ill or injured, and getting everyone back to a safe haven. So first mates really must be able to demonstrate skills and responsibility to a high standard and we are very proud that Andy has achieved this!

Andy Gissing

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2020 adult voyages - including training for current and potential volunteers
Our 2020 programme includes two adult weekend voyages:

27-29 March 2020
9-11 October 2020

Both these voyages start and finish in Southampton and run from 8pm Friday to 5pm Sunday. Cost is £205 per person and they are open to anyone aged 18+ but particularly suited to volunteers who want a chance to practise your skills without having to supervise young people at the same time - including current volunteers but also adults who are interested in getting involved and want to find out more. Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org to reserve a place.

There will also be a longer adult voyage at some point in 2020 but the date will depend on which voyages are needed by youth groups.

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Some winter refit dates - and core team needed

We haven’t yet finalised plans for Prolific’s winter refit 2019-20, but we do have a few dates for you:

From Tuesday 5th to Friday 8th November we will be starting to set up for refit - clearing the store, moving into the refit house etc. - and we'd really appreciate help, especially from anyone with a car, van or trailer who can help us to move gear.

The weekend of 9-10 November will be a volunteers' weekend when we need to shift loads of gear off the boat and also do a deep clean. Lots of help required!

We're also aiming for a volunteers' weekend 7-8 December.

Key dates including volunteer weekends from January to March 2020 will be published in due course. You can email refit@oytsouth.org if you can help with any of this and we'll get back to you much nearer the time.

Volunteer weekends are arranged so that those of you with jobs or other commitments can still get involved over the winter. Your help really is vital - and for our volunteer sea staff, if we get too many applications to sail on the really popular voyages next year, the people who have helped at refit - or supported the charity in other ways, such as raising money or introducing us to new clients - may find themselves higher on the priority list than people who haven't done so much...

However, our staff team will need more than just casual weekend help over the winter if they are to get through all the work, so we are hoping to recruit a couple of full-time volunteers to join them between November and March as we have done in previous years

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, this could be an ideal opportunity for you. 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. If you’re interested, please read the web page and email us with the details requested at the bottom of the page.

Our current Staff Cadet Georgia was a core refit team volunteer where she impressed us so much that we offered her a full-time paid job; and Danny who has sailed on lots of voyages this season and recently completed his third mate's qualification was also a core team volunteer, so the role really does open doors!

refit

refit

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Southampton Boat Show discount offer
Big thanks to John Goode who has once again kindly arranged for discounted tickets for OYT South members and supporters to the Southampton International Boat Show which runs from 13th to 22nd September 2019.

If you receive the email version of this newsletter, you can see the discount details, which we can't put on a public website.

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Calling all supporters who work in the marine sector!
Thanks to everyone who has contributed to this initiative so far - including:

  • an offshore surveyor
  • a vessel traffic services operator
  • a Royal Fleet Auxiliary Deck Officer Cadet
  • a dinghy instructor
  • a sail training skipper
  • a renewable fuels trader
  • a tug captain
  • a freelance sailor
  • third officer on a cruise ship
  • the Chief Executive of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency!

Have a look here to see what other people have sent in, and then please do write your own!

Whether you work at sea, or you are based ashore doing something with maritime connections, can you help us with some information about how you got into your job and what you actually do?

OYT South sails with hundreds of young people each year and most of them are not aware of the huge range of jobs available in the marine sector. But we know there are jobs at every level of qualifications, skills and experience, from professional seafarers, sailing instructors, marina managers and dockmasters, riggers, surveyors, sailmakers, yacht designers, to specialists in paint or electronics or water systems or engineering. There are people working as managers or admin assistants in the offices of marine companies; there are those who clean or repair boats; there are chefs on cruise ships; there are staff in chandleries; there are coastguards and lifeboat crews; there are lawyers and accountants and insurers specialising in the marine sector; there are marine photographers and artists ... a broader range of careers than we could possibly list.

Our idea is to put together a folder to keep on the boat containing a page each from as many of our friends and supporters as possible, briefly describing any job you currently hold or have previously held, connected to the maritime sector in some way - so that young people who sail with us can leaf through it and get some ideas. It would be left handy for people to browse when off-watch. We're not looking for lots of detail - a page from each person would be fine. Just enough that it might spark some interest and lead a young person to look into things more thoroughly!

If you can help, what we are looking for is:

1) Your job title (and your name if you like, though we are happy to leave this out if you want)
2) A photo of you at work (or of something work-related if you prefer not to appear)
3) How did you get into your current job? What qualifications and experience did you need?
4) What sorts of things might you do in a typical week?
5) What's the best thing about your job?
6) One piece of advice for a young person who might one day like a job like yours?

The target audience might not be anywhere near applying for real jobs - they may just be wondering what GCSE options to take, or what college course to apply for ... and if we can inspire them by showing them some different career options, they can start making choices that set them on the right path.

Email it to caroline.white@oytsouth.org and we'll start putting the folder together.

Please help us to inspire young people. You never know, you might change someone's life! Here are some examples to get you started.

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Vessel maintenance days - help needed

Prolific has regular in-season maintenance days when we really appreciate lots of volunteer help. The next one is:

Friday 20th September - Southampton (Ocean Village)

Skilled and unskilled help needed. Over-18s welcome. 16 and 17-year olds may be allowed to help at the skipper's discretion and depending on what work needs to be done, but trainee bosuns and young people who have had sea staff recommendations should certainly ask if they can help at a maintenance day. We normally need people on board from around 9am to 5pm, and lunch is provided on board.

Email refit@oytsouth.org so the skipper knows you are coming and can plan jobs and meals for you, or call the boat on 07990 518915.

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* Who wants to buy a 27-foot yacht?

A great friend of OYT South is reluctantly having to sell his boat due to his own advancing years - he's offering £100 donation if the eventual buyer hears about the boat via our newsletter or via someone who saw it in this newsletter, so please do spread the word! Pipkin IV is described as "a prime example of a fin keel Moody 27 (1984), lying at Hornet Services Sailing Club, Gosport. Ready for sea (just add water). Racing or cruising to the continent. 6 berths, ideal for family or single-handed sailing. Beautiful, well-loved, regularly maintained, with a huge inventory of equipment, and a comprehensive Users’ Guide. £16,000, including all the extras. (VAT paid: certificate included). Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org for an introduction to the owner.

PipkinIV

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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!

Big thanks to the Graham High Charity who sponsor our vessel tracking.

Tracking Prolific

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* Financial appeal
Big thanks to Peter Binning, Anthony & Carol Kelsall and Heather Brayshaw for very kind donations. We have also had a Charities Trust donation in the name of Taylor - if anyone can tell us who this might be then we will thank them properly!

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 (pdf) we can claim back tax on your donation.

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Online fundraising - are you helping us raise funds?

We've been mentioning Easyfundraising in this newsletter for a while but we know a lot of our supporters haven't tried it, so we just wanted to highlight how easy it is! All it takes is to go to Easyfundraising and sign up (which is extremely quick and simple). If you want (it's entirely up to you) then you can even install a donation reminder on your web browser so that whenever you do a search for online shopping, you'll see whether each seller offers donations and how much (it's still up to you whether to take a donation for any particular transaction) - and it won't cost you a penny:

easyfundraising

If, instead of doing a search, you go direct to a seller's website, you may get a popup showing that donations are available:easyfundraising

There are really significant donations available for some larger purchases such as flights and hotels, and it still doesn't cost you anything. Some charities are making substantial amounts of money through easyfundraising, so please try it if you can.

There's no cost to you, and all it does is remind you of donations available so you can't forget it when you shop online - you can still opt out any time you like.

OYT South is also 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.

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2019 AGM date

The 2019 AGM has been set for Saturday 9th November - more details to follow, but do save the date! It will probably include the usual Curry Night...

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Chris Ellis Award - win up to £500
off the price of your next voyage
Now open for 2019 entries.

If you enjoy a voyage with OYT South and want to come again (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. 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.

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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 Lauren Mackenzie, aged 19. Lauren first sailed with us for her gold DofE and quickly started volunteering with us, qualifying as a watchleader as soon as she was old enough and then being upgraded to second mate last September. She is currently in her first year at university, studying maths at Oxford.

Lauren 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 Lauren. If you’re not happy with something and want to know what to do about it, you might want to start by talking to Lauren. If you want to get more involved - whether by just doing another voyage, or by training as a volunteer - Lauren can point you in the right direction. You can email her at laurenmackenzie@oytsouth.org.

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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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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, 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 period for sending in bids for volunteer berths is generally from November to early January. There's no point sending in bids until we ask for them as we won't be taking bookings any earlier - but 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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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!

And Instagram @oyt_south

And LinkedIn Ocean Youth Trust South

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, or vulnerable adults. Crew members can use the sites to stay in touch with the boat and with each other, but not with individual staff and volunteers.

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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 newsletter 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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