OYT South bulletin 3rd March 2023

OYT South’s weekly newsletter, including details of what has happened on the boat in the last week, plus short notice sailing vacancies for crew and sea staff and other ways you can get involved, and all the charity’s news.

OYT South bulletin 3rd March 2023

by | Mar 3, 2023

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

* Welcome to our new Staff Skipper!
We reported back in November that we had appointed a new Staff Skipper, but he wasn’t available to join us straight away. Diggory Rose started work this week and we are delighted to have him on the team and look forward to having his experience, skills and personality on board as he gets to know Prolific, OYT South and all our systems and routines. Please make him very welcome and give him lots of support as he learns about OYT South ways!

Diggory Rose

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* Sea staff vacancies
Just a handful of spaces left for volunteer sea staff – can anyone help? Some of these are marked tbc and this usually means the place has been offered to someone but it’s not yet certain they can accept – but it might be useful to have a reserve in mind just in case.

    • 26-30 May, Southampton – possibly two spaces – one for another qualified watchleader tbc, and the other could be a trainee mate or bosun tbc.
    • 31 May – 4 June, Southampton – second mate or experienced third mate definitely needed.
    • 5-9 June plus maintenance day 10th June, Southampton – possibly space for another qualified watchleader tbc.
    • 19-23 June, Southampton – engineer or bosun needed, or possibly another watchleader or trainee watchleader
    • 2-8 Aug, Brixham – possibly space for a watchleader, trainee watchleader or bosun tbc
    • 11-15 Sept – space for two more volunteers (qualified or trainee mates or a bosun). This is an adult voyage including new potential watchleaders so it doesn’t work for a trainee mate on their first voyage as sea staff, because you need to be able to help to train others; but if you are a new volunteer this year and you’ll have done a voyage or two earlier in the season, this could still be an option as it can be good for people who are just thinking about joining us to meet someone who is only a few months ahead of them. But one of the two places needs to go to a more experienced qualified mate.

Email caroline.white@oytsouth.org if you can help with one of these.

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* Winter refit news
Big thanks this week to Lauren, Josh, Diggory, Sara, Ben “Sparky” Whinnett, Barry Walker, Katie Hamlet and Steve Lacey.

Thanks to Kemp Sails for bringing our repaired sails back and measuring up for new sail covers.

Sara getting Prolific's sails back on board

Thanks to Marine Fire Safety for returning our life rafts and fitting a new engine room fire system. 

Lauren getting lifejackets back on board Prolific

Thanks to Robline for new lines and mooring lines.

Also the dinghy and outboard have arrived; and the fire system has been drained so we can put the wall back (wooooo)!

In between all that there has been more painting; Josh has rewired the battery bank; and the team has started re-rigging (blocks and halyards). And this is a picture of the hydraulic steering pipes with rust inhibitor on them!

Hydraulic steering pipes on board Prolific, showing new rust inhibitor  Refit work on board Prolific

The team has also been clearing bunks for this weekend when we have people on board, as well as getting comfortable in their own bunks:

Cosy bunk on board Prolific

Contact refit@oytsouth.org if you can offer any refit help over the coming weeks – either on board or perhaps taking something to work on at home.

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* Sea staff section of the website
We’ve been adding things to the sea staff section of the website! It’s accessed by password but everyone sailing this season should have been sent the password. If you don’t have yours then please email webmaster1@oytsouth.org.

As well as three of the presentations from the training weekend (Safeguarding, Online Harm, and Understanding Autistic People), we have links to the handbooks for the new Raymarine kit we have on board – if you are going to be involved in any navigation this season, do have a look. And then we have the 2023 editions of the three main volumes of the Voyage Handbook:

Volume 1: Pre-voyage preparations – covering things like boat familiarisation checklists, sea staff briefings, emergency muster stations and more. Updated for 2023 but we will need a further revision for firefighting systems as the team are still working on new arrangements.

Volume 2: Watchleader training manual – covering everything from the initial briefings you might be asked to deliver to young people; sail hoists and drops; other deck work; watch-keeping and navigation; clean-up; how to teach RYA courses and more. Minor changes for 2023.

Volume 3: Policies – including everything from safeguarding and equal opportunities to garbage management and working aloft. Updated for 2023 including a complete revision of the Safeguarding Policy – please read.

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* Revised and updated documents on website
We’ve been working hard on reviewing all sorts of documents ahead of the season start!

Apart from the documents mentioned above for active sea staff, we also now have on the website:

Revised crew handbooks (pre-voyage) and crew logbooks (for use during the voyage) can be seen here. Big thanks to Lauren and Unity for their work in updating them. The crew logbook – which has always given people a chance to record what they have done on board, with a daily page plus sections on things like naming parts of the boat, or tying knots – now has all-new sections on practical areas like buoyage, but also on #SailToWellbeing and environmental issues, which we want to keep promoting as part of the voyage experience on board Prolific.

Covers of new Crew Handbook and Crew Logbook

We also have a revised Safeguarding Policy (big thanks to the Safeguarding team – Steve, Cathy and Anjelica), and on the Group Leaders’ page, an updated risk assessment.

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* 2023 voyages available for young people
Dates open for individual bookings are as follows. Please state your age when applying – we can sail with young people aged 11-25 but we aim to organise compatible groups and not have too wide an age range on any voyage.

1-6 April 2023, Southampton, 5 nights, £575 – young people needed to mix with a group of 8 very deserving young award winners on this voyage. Bursary funding may be available for disadvantaged or vulnerable young people.
7-11 April 2023, Southampton, 4 nights, £475
5-10 July 2023, 5 nights, Poole to Brixham, £575 per person (this could be an individual OR group voyage depending on demand – please ask)
20-26 July 2023, Falmouth to Brixham, 6 nights, £675
9-15 Aug 2023, 6 nights, Brixham, £675
16-22 Aug 2023, 6 nights, Brixham, £675
29 Aug-3 Sept 2023, 5 nights, Poole to Southampton, £575

We’re happy to take smaller groups (e.g. three or four people) on individual voyages to mix with others; but many clients will want to book the whole boat exclusively for their own group (twelve to fifteen people, including any adult leaders who come with the group). Dates available for whole-boat bookings:

30 April-3 May 2023, 3 nights, Southampton, £375 per person (tbc – we may have a client for this)
14-19 May 2023, 5 nights, Southampton, £575 per person
5-10 July 2023, 5 nights, Poole to Brixham, £575 per person (this could be an individual OR group voyage depending on demand – please ask)
9-14 Oct 2023, 5 nights, Southampton, £575 per person (tbc – we may have a client for this)

Contact webmaster1@oytsouth.org to express an interest.

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Special voyage for young volunteers – could this be you?
Thanks to a generous donation from the Gipsy Moth Trust, OYT South has an annual training voyage funded specifically for young people aged 16-25 who are starting to sail as volunteer watchleaders or bosuns, or who have been newly recommended to join our volunteers.

This year’s young volunteers’ training voyage will be 5-10 Sept, starting and finishing in Southampton. If you have sailed with us in the last year or two and have been invited back for volunteer training, or have recently started sailing as a trainee mate, third mate or bosun and you want to develop your skills and are aged 16-25, let us know if you would be interested in joining this voyage.

If you have not yet been told by one of our skippers that you are ready for volunteer training but you are hoping to earn a recommendation this year, you can contact us about going on the waiting list for the September voyage. Then if you come on another voyage before then and do well enough to earn your recommendation, you might get a place on the September voyage as well.

The September voyage is designed to get people thinking not just as another crew member but as someone who can start stepping up to leading, teaching, supervising and encouraging other young people. Around one in three of our volunteers on board is aged under 25 and started out as crew members on an ordinary voyage before coming back for more training and working their way up the ladder. It’s a lot of fun and it’s also great for your own personal development and providing evidence to future employers that you can stand out from the crowd and take on responsibility.

Here’s what people said about last year’s Gipsy Moth voyage:

“My favourite bit has just been really watching everyone throw themselves into leading stuff, it’s been really really impressive. But also how everyone else supported them when they were doing leading, that was really really good.”

“My memorable bit was when I was told I had to take down the mizzen and I had to lead it and I stressed myself out and I knocked my confidence by doubting myself and I was going like, ‘I can’t do it, I can’t do it,’ and then I done it and then Andy [first mate] took me to the side and he said, ‘you just did it, you can do it,’ and I think that was just like a really nice, just a really nice little chat”.

“My favourite bit this trip was probably how confident I became learning how all the sailing procedures work, and all the different ropes, whereas previous trips I’ve not been that familiar with how it all works, but I’m definitely a lot more confident with it all now.”

Young volunteers voyage 2022

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2023 adult voyages and volunteer training

We have adult voyages scheduled as follows:

5-7 May 2023, Southampton, 2 nights, age range 18+, £245 per person, adult weekend voyage (Friday evening to Sunday evening).

11-15 Sept 2023, Southampton, 4 nights, age range 18+, £475, adult week (Monday to Friday).

22-24 Sept 2023, Southampton, 2 nights, age range 18+, £245 per person, adult weekend voyage (Friday evening to Sunday evening).

These are open to anyone aged 18+ but priority will be given to people who are interested in finding out more about volunteering with the charity and potentially hoping to use the voyage to earn a recommendation for volunteer training (especially those who have not had the opportunity to earn a recommendation on a youth voyage), as well as current volunteers looking for some extra training on a voyage where they can focus on their own skills without the responsibility of supervising young people at the same time.

Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org to reserve a place on an adult voyage.

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South Coast Boat Show – help needed 21-23 April
The South Coast Boat Show will be taking place in Ocean Village over the weekend of 21-23 April. Prolific will once again be at the heart of the show, providing tea, coffee and bacon rolls to the public in exchange for donations to the charity.

We will need a good team of volunteers on Friday afternoon, Saturday and Sunday, to get the boat ready with the deck awnings up plus flags and bunting, and then working in the galley to make drinks and bacon rolls, or showing people round the boat and talking to them about the work of the charity.

We also have drinks receptions on board on both Friday and Saturday evenings and we need plenty of volunteers to help with those.

It would be good to have some sea staff on board but also at least a couple of under-18s who have sailed with us and are happy to talk to people about what the experience was like.

Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you would like to be involved.

Josh cooking bacon rolls on board Prolific  South Coast boat Show with Prolific at the heart

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Financial appeal
We need a regular flow of funds to cover at least three major areas: bursaries for young people who could not otherwise afford to sail; vessel maintenance and equipment; and staff salaries – please help, or pass on our details to anyone you come across who might make a grant, large or small.

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 we can claim back tax on your donation.

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Raise funds for OYT South if you’re shopping online
we’ve made nearly £1,200 through Easyfundraising! – but Amazon Smile to close
“What a fool I was!” says Mark Todd.

“For ages I’ve seen in the bulletin that Easyfundraising is a good way to raise money for charity, but I never got round to doing anything about it, and when Caz told me how easy it was, I didn’t listen.

I thought it might be a hassle, or that I’d have to remember to do something when I bought stuff online, or that it probably wasn’t really worthwhile.

This week I finally got round to it and it turns out it’s a REALLY EASY way to raise money for the charity I care about … and I definitely should have done it sooner.

It takes a minute or two to sign up; you can do it on a desktop, tablet and/or phone, and you can install a widget that flags up when a donation is available. Once that’s done, imagine you’re looking to buy – say – a rainbow unicorn: just put “rainbow unicorn” in your usual search box, and the list of results shows you which sites come with donations, and how much. It’s up to you what to pick and whether to accept the donation from the site, but a huge choice of sites will offer a donation – and it doesn’t cost you a penny.

I don’t know why I didn’t do it sooner … but if there’s anyone else who has been like me and just not got round to it, PLEASE click the link now and sign up!”

We have already raised almost £1,200 through Easyfundraising – huge thanks to everyone who has used it!

OYT South has also received funds from Amazon Smile – but very sadly Amazon has closed the scheme and now donates to charities chosen by the company rather than by you when you shop.

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OYT South social media – please get involved
If you look at the top left of any page on our website, you can click on icons for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn. Please share our social media posts as widely as you can – with the help of all our supporters, this charity is doing some amazing work and we need more people to hear about it. You don’t need to do anything more than share a post, or perhaps add a comment which could be as simple as “I’ve sailed with this charity!” or “I volunteer for this charity!”.

Please note that OYT South has a policy that our adult staff and volunteers should not make or accept personal online connections 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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Website – Raise and Sail – help needed
Although we have a brand-new website, one section that still needs work is to update Raise and Sail, which was designed many years ago by volunteers Fiona Keen and Emma Burrows as a stand-alone area of the site full of ideas and resources for young people who want to raise money in order to come sailing. We have a volunteer doing some work on this but others may be able to help too, if you have good ideas or experience of raising money. Email caroline.white@oytsouth.org if you would like to help.

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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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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.org 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 11-25, 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 11-25 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, mate 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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