John Laing in refit

Refit team

Help us over the winter - and learn new skills!

As well as our regular volunteers who come to help with our winter vessel refit for a weekend or a few days at a time, we usually need at least a couple of long-term volunteers - ideally three or four - to join the core refit team: perhaps to do a full refit from November to March - or at least to do a period of a few weeks or months rather than the odd day here and there that most volunteers can manage.

A place on the core team is worth considering if you are between jobs or on a gap year or a career break. It could be ideal for someone considering a career in the marine industry (especially because some employers like to see evidence that candidates can offer more than just sailing skills, and the ability to keep a boat maintained and even to fix things at sea might just be enough to make the difference between you and onther candidate with similar sailing experience). Quite a few past core team volunteers have moved on to paid work in the sailing industry at first mate or skipper level, where an understanding of maintenance issues is vital.

But the roles are also suitable for anyone who likes the idea of contributing a few weeks' work to a good charitable cause.

Volunteers receive food and accommodation, as well as experience in boat repairs and maintenance.

Volunteers on the core team must be aged 18+ .

Practical skills in any aspect of boat maintenance will be an advantage but not essential. What is vital is that core team volunteers should be hard-working, responsible and enthusiastic. The team will all be living together on board (unless you can arrange your own accommodation locally) and it is vital that volunteers are also prepared to take responsibility for a share of cooking and cleaning.

Long-term core-team volunteers are a vital part of the refit effort as they provide continuity against the background of short-term volunteers coming and going. They have time to become familiar with a variety of refit tasks, becoming capable and competent enough to work with minimal supervision, allowing the professional staff to get on with other work.

Core refit volunteers often go on to become bosuns, watch leaders or relief engineers with Ocean Youth Trust South during the sailing season - anyone who works hard for us over the winter has every chance of a place on some exciting voyages the following year if you want!

About our winter refit


Thank you for completing the form!



“Great insight into the practical side of sailing - thanks.” Sam, 20

Contacts