The AYC Schools Sailing Trust has been established to get young people from schools and youth groups in the Suffolk community on the water to benefit from the life skills that sailing and water-based sports can encourage – creativity, confidence, teamwork, communication, determination, and independence. It is aimed at young people from the Suffolk community who have not had the chance to learn to sail or experience other water-based activities.
In 2021, Aldeburgh Yacht Club Schools Sailing Trust again ran a successful programme at AYC, after COVID prevented any activity in 2020. It ran for 12 days over 4 weeks in June; 187 children from eight local schools had a great sailing experience, and 31 gained their RYA Stage 1 qualification. Over forty volunteers were actively involved providing over two-thirds of the instructor, safety-boat and shore-based support. In addition AYCSST employed qualified instructors providing extra employment opportunities to our team of young instructors. All this was supported by many generous donors and five supportive and repeat sponsors.
An educational outreach programme runs in advance of the sailing activities, so children arrive with some level of knowledge and perhaps fewer nerves. It teaches pupils about the history, geography and environment of the river on which they will learn to sail.
"The day our children spent at Aldeburgh Yacht Club opened up a whole new world of experiences for the children from our school. Not only was it an amazing opportunity for them to experience something new, take them out of their comfort zone and build their confidence, it also provided them with the opportunity to have first class sailing tuition. They all had a fantastic day.” Lucie Fairweather, Head teacher, Eyke Primary School.
To complement the paid instructors, the programme relies on volunteers who can commit time in June (the programme runs every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday – morning and afternoon) to deliver the programme. As you can imagine, many helpers are required to provide a high level of safety cover. In addition to sailing instructors, the roles range from shore-based helpers, qualified safety boat drivers, safety boat crew, and good sailors who are keen to learn how to teach sailing to young people. Everyone involved much enjoyed themselves, experienced great camaraderie and sense of achievement and new members found it a great way to get to know others. The use of iVolunteer makes scheduling much easier for volunteer and organiser alike.
Sunday 8th May, 2022 is Volunteer Morning to enable our volunteers to meet each other and to understand the skills needed to teach sailing, or be safety boat helm and crew. If you would like to know more, do contact Susie Rixon, firstname.lastname@example.org who co-ordinates the volunteers.
The AYC Schools Sailing Trust charitable status was confirmed in 2019, following a hugely successful response from AYC Members and sponsors to support this initiative with an initial £20,000 donated following the then Commodore’s appeal. Many thanks to all.
We would also like to extend our appreciation to all our generous sponsors - Suffolk Secrets, RF Upson & Son, James White Drinks, Stressless (Ekornes Ltd) and Ward & McKenzie Yacht Consultants – without whom 187 children would not have experienced sailing and enjoyed time on the River Alde in 2021, and with whose ongoing support, as well as that of other donors, we are in a healthy position to run the 2022 programme.
Further donations enabled AYCSST to sponsor 3 out of 5 children from Aldeburgh Primary School who progressed to a summer course and achieved RYA Stage 2.
Charitable status ensures we have the benefit of Gift Aid from donations going forward.
We are always grateful to anyone who can support us in any way as one of our many priorities is to ensure the programme is sustainable. You can donate via:
AYC Schools Sailing Trust
Sort code: 20-16-12
If you can also download and complete the Gift Aid form and send it to email@example.com, or post it to Ellie in the office, that will enable AYC SST to claim the Gift Aid.
Come to the Volunteer Morning on Sunday, 8th May – email firstname.lastname@example.org
On Thursday 30th June, we will be inviting our sponsors and supporters down to see the programme in action - email email@example.com. If you are interested to learn more, do put the date in your diary and as we are keen to show the work to as many interested people as possible. Thank you drinks for everyone involved are planned for 4pm that day.
Please, at any time, if you would like to learn more about AYC Schools Sailing do get in contact with any of the Trustees. We would love to hear from you. We are passionate about ensuring the charity can continue to provide the sailing experience to young people in our community.