Naval children make their maiden voyage on iconic Challenger Yacht

Sixteen brave and courageous young people from the Naval Children’s Charity have taken to the seas onboard a 72ft Challenger yacht with Tall Ships Youth Trust.

The young people from the Naval Children’s Charity were divided into two age groups of 12-15 and 16-25 for the two different legs. The first for the younger cohort starting from Whitehaven for six nights and the second from Greenock to Petershead for seven.

The trips were not plain sailing for the teams, but both overcame challenges: sailing in harsh weather, sea sickness and living in very close quarters allowed them to develop their communication, resilience and teamwork.

Clare Scherer, from the Naval Children’s Charity, said: “We were delighted to be able to offer this opportunity to our young people. The combination of the extraordinary experience onboard the iconic Challenger yacht, learning to sail and gaining their RYA certificate, combined with meeting and bonding with other young people from Naval families with shared experiences, will no doubt enhance their lives.

“We hope that this experience will give them insight into the opportunities and experiences out there in the world for them and we are proud to have been able to offer this life chance to our Naval children”.

 James Hudson, Director of Fundraising and Marketing at TSYT, said: “We were thrilled to partner with NCC for these voyages, which enabled the young people to push themselves out of their comfort zones and experience new and exciting challenges.

“Working together onboard, the two youth crews took part in all activities and pulled together to overcome shared challenges, such as preparing to sail in bad weather and living in close quarters. This experience enabled them to develop transferable life skills such as communication, resilience and teamwork.

“We’re looking forward to welcoming further young people from the charity over the coming years as we build our partnership.”

The success of both trips has resulted in three of the young people continuing their RYA training and learning journey with TSYT on its volunteer development programme. This is not normally offered to children under the age of 15, however, if someone shows exceptional potential and shines TSYT will offer it to someone younger. One of the chosen three is just 12-years-old. They will now develop and train as a watch leader to help on future youth voyages.

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