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OYT South bulletin 20th March 2020

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


* COVID-19 (coronavirus) update
A statement from Mark Todd, Chief Executive of Ocean Youth Trust South on COVID-19 is on our website.

In the light of government guidance on travel and social contact, our 2020 sailing season is not starting on Monday as planned. Clearly we have no wish to put young people, staff and volunteers at risk.

We are contacting clients and volunteers on a voyage-by-voyage basis as voyages are cancelled but we hope to be back up and running as soon as it is safe to do so.

There are difficult times ahead and we will be immensely grateful to those who are able to offer support to see us through.

In the meantime all at OYT South send very best wishes to everyone connected with the charity, and to all your families and friends.

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* Financial appeal

As with all businesses and charities, OYT South is under tremendous financial pressure due to COVID-19, with a very significant loss of voyage income for an extended period. We realise that many of our friends and supporters will be facing financial difficulties of your own, but if anyone is in a position to make a donation to help with our core costs over this period, we would be more grateful than we can say.

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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* 2020 sailing programme - voyages for young people AVAILABLE NOW
It is not yet clear when we will be able to start running voyages again, but we would like to encourage bookings as much as possible so that as soon as it is safe to sail again, we can get as many young people as possible on board. We realise that the current uncertainty makes it difficult for people to plan, so we can announce that from today, 20th March, any NEW deposits received for voyages will be held and if your chosen voyage is unable to go ahead, you will be able to transfer that deposit to any suitable later voyage, even if that happens to be in 2021, and if this proves completely impossible, your deposit will be refunded in full. This means that you can book voyages now with complete security.

The situation is more complex with bookings agreed before COVID-19 and we will be contacting clients on a voyage-by-voyage basis as it becomes clear which voyages will not run.

We are also looking to bring forward the publication of a 2021 voyage programme so that people unable to sail this year will be able to make advance bookings for next year.

For those wishing to make a booking this year, places available on 2020 voyages have been divided into four types:

Voyages in blue: ideal for 11-17 year olds and potentially suitable for those needing a gentler introduction to sailing. Open to older and more confident crew members as long as they understand the nature of the group and are happy to join in - and maybe support others.

Voyages in green: ideal for age 15 - 25 unless otherwise specified, DofE gold residentials and others looking for an exciting, adventurous voyage. Younger crew members can be included if they would fit with this sort of group.

Voyages in red: currently open for group bookings (max 15 places) rather than individuals. These voyages may be released for individual bookings later on if they are not booked by a school, youth group, charity etc.

Voyages in purple: specific age ranges or other details given on a voyage-by-voyage basis

Places currently available:

1-5 June 2020, Southampton, 4 nights, age range 11-17, £405 per person. Possibly three places available to join a group of young people from Gosport.
29 June - 3 July, Southampton, 4 nights, age range 12-25, £405 per person, 15 places available. The first few bookings here will influence the shape of the voyage - once we have some crew members signed up and know the age range etc., we will advertise for others who will fit with them.
Mon 6 July – Sun 12 July
, Poole to Brixham, 6 nights, £595. Passports required. Up to 8 places left. This voyage was previously listed as Poole to Brixham but is now scheduled for Southampton to Brixham instead.

Tues 14 July – Mon 20 July, Brixham, 6 nights, £595. The first few bookings here will influence the shape of the voyage - once we have some crew members signed up and know the age range etc., we will advertise for others who will fit with them.
Tues 21 July – Sat 25 July, Brixham, 4 nights, £405. The first few bookings here will influence the shape of the voyage - once we have some crew members signed up and know the age range etc., we will advertise for others who will fit with them.
Sun 26 July – Fri 31 July, Brixham, 5 nights, £505 - tbc
Sat 1 Aug – Fri 7 Aug, Brixham, 6 nights, £595. Passports required. 6 places left.
Sat 8 Aug – Fri 14 Aug, Brixham to Southampton, 6 nights, £595. Passports required. 5 places left.

Sat 22 Aug – Thurs 27 Aug, Dartmouth to Poole, 5 nights, £505. Passports required. Up to 6 places left.
Fri 28 Aug – Weds 2 Sept, Poole to Southampton, 5 nights, £505. Passports required. Up to 7 places left.

Mon 12 Oct – Sat 17 Oct, Southampton, 5 nights, £505
Mon 19 Oct – Fri 23 Oct, Southampton, 4 nights, £405
Fri 23 Oct – Tues 27 Oct, Southampton, 4 nights, £390 (Friday evening start to allow for people who are at school during the day). 1 or 2 places left.

To make a booking for any of these voyages now, please email office@oytsouth.org.

See here for the full 2020 programme.

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2020 adult voyages - including training for current and potential volunteers
As with youth voyages above, from today, 20th March, any NEW deposits received for adult voyages will be held and if your chosen voyage is unable to go ahead, you will be able to transfer that deposit to any suitable later voyage, even if that happens to be in 2021, and if this proves completely impossible, your deposit will be refunded in full. This means that you can book voyages now with complete security.

Our 2020 programme includes two adult weekend voyages and one longer voyage.

There are currently two adult voyages on the list for 2020:

7-12 June 2020, Southampton to Poole, 5 nights, age 18+, £505 per person
9-11 October 2020, Southampton, 2 nights,(8pm Friday to 5pm Sunday), age 18+, £205 per person.

Both voyages 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, or to anyone who might be interested in joining our volunteers and whats to find out more, or any other adults who just want good sailing in good company.

Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org to reserve a place.

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* This newsletter in the coming weeks - contributions needed!
With no voyage reports for a while, it will be good to keep reminding ourselves about the value of our charitable work, the life-changing experiences and fantastic fun and friendship on our voyages. If you have a treasured memory of sailing with us, or a tale of a voyage you will never forget, or a funny story, please send it to webmaster1@oytsouth.org and we'll publish the best in future editions of this newsletter.

To get things started:

In this week in 2005 we were sailing with a crew combining students from St Gabriel's School and Lancing College, and the bulletin proudly announced that twice (in Ocean Village and Gunwharf), they had actually sailed the boat alongside rather than using the engine. At the time this was presented purely as a successful achievement, but we can now report that minutes after the newsletter went out, we had a phone call from a very experienced former skipper saying: "I see you're using the code for 'We had engine failure'" - and he was right ... In the same issue we reported a letter that had arrived in the office from Jenni Paradine, who was John Laing’s liaison officer in Bermuda in the 2000 Tall Ships Race. She says “It was one of the most amazing experiences I have had. I fell in love with the boat and still keep in touch with some of the people that were on board. The tee shirt the crew made me has a special place in my cupboard ... Every time I get emails about refits I wish I could be there."

In 2006 we noted that "A sign of a good refit: nothing broke during this first voyage except the loo roll holder in the starboard heads (and possibly the staff bosun)." Our staff bosun at the time was Julian "Dinghy Boy" Watkins: 

Dinghy Boy

In this week in 2010, we made the first announcement of plans for our 50th anniversary event which was to take place that October. You can read all about it here,, including a pdf of the wonderful brochure which Emma Ellis produced, detailing the charity's history since the earliest days and describing the various boats used by the charity - this is Theodora:

Theodora

In this week in 2010, we announced that we had been selected as one of the charities to receive a donation from Prince William and Kate Middleton's Royal Wedding Charitable Gift Fund; and in 2011 we had BBC South on board with Dee Caffari, the first woman to sail solo, non-stop around the world in both directions, reporting on a donation we had received from Sport Relief, and we were live on the BBC South lunchtime news.

In 2013 were were at sea with a young crew from Southampton and the newsletter noted that "crew member Taylor set an early-season record for keeping quiet on board, of one hour and 47 minutes, which anyone who knows Taylor will realise is one hour and 46 minutes longer than might have been expected."

By this week in 2017 we were sailing with our new boat Prolific, taking the drone images which you can see in various places on the videos page and elsewhere on the website:

Prolific

By 2018 the bulletin showed some faces on the refit team which will be familiar to current Prolific sailors. They seem to be happy that winter is over and spring is arriving:

Refit team 2017-18

Which brings us almost up to the present day - so do please send in your contributions for future issues!

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* Events needing volunteers - dates for your diary!
The Poole Harbour Boat Show 2020 has been cancelled but Prolific will aim to be there in 2021. 

The South Coast Boat Show in Ocean Village which was due to take place in May has been provisionally rescheduled for 3-5 July and if it can go ahead safely, Prolific will be there. We would be open to the public and needing volunteers to show visitors around. Ideally this will include volunteers of all ages and with different levels of experience but we will certainly want to make sure we have some young people on board.

For now, please just put the date in your diary; but a bit nearer the time we will let you know if we have more information.

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* Online training courses
If you can't get involved in your normal activities over the coming weeks, maybe it's a good time to think about some online qualifications. 

OYT South offers 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 more advanced, one of our occasional 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. 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.

For those who are volunteering with us or about to start volunteering, we also have a range of courses outside sailing and navigation. Three of these courses are essential for our staff and volunteers: Child Protection in Sport and Active Leisure, Food Hygiene and Safety, and Safeguarding Adults. But if you've already done those, there's a list of other courses at the bottom of the page, including  Mental Wellbeing in Sport and Physical Activity, Preventing Bullying, Online Safety, Concussion Awareness and all sorts of other things - do have a look. Just one £10 payment (special price available only to our volunteers and prospective volunteers) gives you access to ALL these courses.

It would be great if we could get back up and running with lots of our volunteers having additional skills and knowledge!

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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 make a donation for any particular transaction) - and it won't cost you a penny. If, instead of doing a search, you go direct to a seller's website, you may get a popup showing that donations are available.

There are really significant donations available for some larger purchases, 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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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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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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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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Receiving this newsletter by email
Many thanks to all those who have given consent to receiving this newsletter by email. If you are not currently getting it by email and would like to, please just click here Newsletter Subscribe and press "send", or email webmaster1@oytsouth.org.

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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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