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18 Dorset youngsters set sail thanks to Poole Harbour Boat Show

18 youngsters from Dorset will participate in a free 5-night voyage on a 32- metre sailing boat, thanks to a charitable partnership between the Poole Harbour Boat Show and Ocean Youth Trust South. 

The Poole Harbour Boat Show is the largest, free to attend boat show on the south coast and event organisers, Poole Harbour Commissioners chose Ocean Youth Trust South as their charity partner of the year for 2019. As part of the charitable partnership they initially offered 12 lucky, local young people the opportunity to participate in a free 5- night voyage on the sail training vessel Prolific between 21st – 26th August 2019.  Entries opened back in March and organisers urged the local community to get involved and to get nominating deserving young people, aged 12 – 18 years in Dorset.

Ocean Youth Trust South provides residential voyages as a personal development opportunity for young people, aged 12 – 25, the majority of whom are disadvantaged or vulnerable in some way. Young people sail as active crew members, responsible for sail handling, steering, watch-keeping, helping with navigation and voyage planning, cooking, cleaning and more. The aim is to develop skills and qualities that will be of lasting value to those young people as well as their schools, employers, families and communities.

PHBS Marketing Manager Tracy Payne advised, “We are thrilled, we have managed to smash our initial target and raised over £9,000! This means we’ve been able to secure 6 extra places and we’ll get a total of 18 young people on a sailing voyage. The Poole Harbour Boat Show theme is to ‘get people on the water’ and through this initiative we have been successful in our mission. 15 of the crew will set sail this month, with the remainder due to sail in 2020.”

Continuing Tracy said, “We were inundated with nominations for this potentially life changing opportunity for a young person in Dorset. It was quite a task to pick our eventual ‘would be’ sailors’. We hope they have a fabulous time and look forward to hearing about their adventure when we welcome them back to Poole at the end of their voyage.”

Mark Todd, Chief Executive of Ocean Youth Trust South enthused: “We were thrilled to be selected as the first dedicated charity for the Poole Harbour Boat Show. Poole has been a very special port in the history of the charity for nearly 60 years. It’s a place where we always know we will get a warm welcome and any support or help we might need. At the Boat Show in June, we met some of the young people who will be involved and I was incredibly impressed with their enthusiasm and with their stories about why they had won their places on the voyage. I’m tremendously excited to go sailing with them. And it’s a huge achievement by everyone in the Boat Show team who has raised the money to make this voyage possible!”