20 Oct Rona Sailing Project
Funds raised at the 2017 SYC Ball have been deployed with regular recipients Sail4Cancer and also Turn To Starboard. This second charity specialises in using the power of sailing to rehabilitate ex-servicemen and women who have been severely injured either physically or mentally in the service of their country. Amputees and those suffering from PTSD find that with training and support from TTS they are much more capable than they thought. This in turn leads to a return in confidence and a greater ability to get back into action as a member of society. One of the TTS beneficiaries who has recently completed their Yachtmaster Offshore was with us at the ball and through conversations with attendees successfully applied to work as crew on a superyacht. A great story that shows just how well the Turn To Starboard approach is working.
“In 2017 the Superyacht Charities supported a campaign by the Rona Sailing Project (RSP) to take part in the “Rendez-vous 2017” Transatlantic Tall Ships race, by providing the funds to create a bursary that ensured no-one would be unable to take part in the huge adventure due to their personal financial circumstances.
The RSP is a charity that has for more than 50 years taken disparate groups of teenagers from all backgrounds to sea for week-long voyages, looking to instil in them self-confidence, self-reliance and respect for their fellows. For this event the RSP campaigned for three years, fundraising, organising and preparing its Oyster 68’ sail training ketch “Rona II” for the five-month event, across legs that took its crews from London to Portugal, to the Canaries and Bermuda, to Boston, around the Gulf of Newfoundland, and finally from Canada to France. In all more than 130 young men, women and volunteers took part, reporting an adventure they’ll remember their entire lives, and in some cases, a truly life-changing experience. Despite in many cases having only sailed for a single week before embarking on the adventure, they sailed Rona II to line honours in two legs, class victory in the return transatlantic leg, and due to consistency over each leg, to overall victory in class. More importantly, a number of the participants showed such dedication and support of their fellow crew members that they have been invited to join the organisation and help it continue its work.
The RSP is immensely grateful to the Superyacht Charities and its donors for their support. Its donation, especially as received early in the campaign, provided not only monetary but confidence in the value of what the organisation was trying to achieve.”