OYT South bulletin 14th March 2024

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 14th March 2024

by | Mar 14, 2024

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


* Refit – please come and help NEXT TUESDAY
We’re getting very close to the start of the sailing season! Thank you to everyone that has come down to the boat this week to help: Gotch, Josh, Lauren, Lynne, Susanna, Annette, Caitlin Neall-Johnston, Juliette Draper, Rob Jelley, and Steve and Cathy Lacey.

A selfie with Susanna and Caitlin, and Juliette attaching curtains in the background.

Everyone has been working hard to make Prolific ready to go to sea again. There’s been a lot of organising of the galley and veg locker, although one question has been raised – how much is too much tartare sauce to have on one boat?!

The galley looking very organised and full of food.

Lauren has created new reference diagrams of where all the food gets stored – the label printer has been frequently used! These were immediately useful as the refit team moved out of the caravans and brought all the remaining food back on board. A huge thank you to MDL for their generous support, as the refit team stayed in three of their caravans in Hamble for the whole winter.

The area around the freezer has been prepped, painted and is now ready to be reassembled. Lots of the paints and other refit materials have gone back to the store, while things needed for the season have now come back to Prolific.

Gotch smiles and gives a ‘thumbs up’ next to a row of trolleys containing paint equipment.

The helm platform has now been reattached, and looks amazing with its new coats of varnish.

The helm platform is reattached.

Over the winter a large pile of chart corrections has built up, and Caitlin and Lauren have been working through it. The Ts and Ps (temporary and preliminary notices) have all been brought up to date, and Susanna has been updating the Admiralty publications and refreshing most of the folders.

Caitlin sits on the table in the saloon, surrounded by charts. Caitlin leans on the table in the saloon and studies a chart.

New folders on the bookshelf in the deckhouse.

Gotch, Josh and Lynne have all been to the main mast (which is still with All-Spars in Swanick), and lots of painting has been going on there, and a new shackle for the halyard for the cruising chute. New jammer parts have arrived from Spinlock, who provided us with them at a very generous discount.

Gotch takes a selfie next to the main mast, which lies horizontally across the boatyard.

You might have noticed in recent bulletins that getting the main mast back in has been “imminent” for a while but hasn’t yet happened. The reason is that the crane can’t operate in over 25 knots of wind and, as you may have noticed, our mast is quite tall and the weather has been quite unfriendly, so the mast lift has been delayed several times! This puts us under a bit of additional pressure for jobs that can’t happen until the mast is back (such as attaching sails). We could therefore do with a really big team on board NEXT TUESDAY 19th March: there is room for up to 10 more people to sleep on board, and you might get a sail on Tuesday if we get all the work done, or on Wednesday once the compass swing is done, if we get the chance. Do please call the boat on 07990 518915 or email refit@oytsouth.org if you can help!

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* Sea staff vacancies – including urgent gap in April!
Please email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you can help with any of the remaining vacancies. Dates given are when crew are on board so volunteers are generally needed the day before:

15-19 April, Southampton – one more watchleader or bosun – URGENT
6-10 May, Southampton – qualified watchleader if possible – URGENT
12-16 May, Southampton – one more watchleader, ideally available to help with the maintenance day on 11th May as well.
18 May, Southampton – one more person for a day sail (day sail volunteers should have a reasonable familiarity with Prolific as there is no time to train anyone new)
29 May – 2 June, Southampton – qualified watchleader
3-7 June, Southampton – another qualified watchleader, ideally available to stay for the maintenance day on 8th June as well
17-21 June, Southampton – qualified or trainee watchleader or possibly bosun
7-13 July, Brixham – one more qualified watchleader, ideally able to help with maintenance day 6th July as well
20-26 July, Brixham – watchleader

At this stage we don’t necessarily want to fill all the remaining September and October places (we may want spaces for good new people who emerge during the season, or to finish upgrade assessments started earlier in the year).

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* 2024 voyages available for people aged 11-25 – PLEASE SHARE
If all our members, volunteers, Trustees and other supporters shared our voyage availability with young people, parents, friends and colleagues, we could easily fill the rest of this year’s voyages. Don’t forget we can sometimes find bursary funding for genuinely disadvantaged young people who couldn’t otherwise afford to sail; but we also welcome those who can afford an amazing adventure holiday!

We have a VERY few full-boat bookings still available for a group such as a school, youth club or another charity. To discuss group bookings, please email caroline.white@oytsouth.org.

However, we have plenty of spaces still available for individual bookings, with fantastic adventure sailing opportunities for young people aged 11-25 in Easter and summer holidays – please share this with anyone you can think of who might be interested:

* 30 March – 3 April, Southampton, 4 nights, £500 per person
7-13 July, Brixham, 6 nights, £710 per person
14-19 July, Brixham, 5 nights, £605 per person
3-9 Aug, Brixham to Guernsey, 6 nights, £710 per person (not including travel)
10-17 Aug, Guernsey to Poole, 7 nights, £815 per person (not including travel) – race against other sail training vessels – ideal for age 14+
* 24-29 Aug, Poole to Brixham, 5 nights, £605 per person
30 Aug – 4 Sept, Brixham to Southampton, 5 nights, £605 per person

Voyages marked * are UK-only and may be ideal for the youngest crew members or anyone else wanting a less ambitious voyage. Passports will be needed for the voyages starting or ending in Guernsey, which may also visit a French port; and other voyages MAY go to France if we are lucky with the weather, so passports will be needed.

No previous sailing experience needed – all we ask is that you come prepared to join in and make friends!

Feedback from last year included:

“It was a truly brilliant five days with many memories made. Everyone was in top form and bonded very well and very quickly. This made the trip 100 times better. A big thank you to all the crew and staff, who were very nice and helpful. I would truly recommend again. Cheers!”

“It is clear that those five days were an unforgettable and life-changing experience for [my son]. From what he describes, he felt recognised and valued as an individual whilst learning to work effectively as a team to overcome challenges. Your staff and volunteers sound wonderful at engaging the students and nurturing their skills, interests and self-esteem. Being in a new environment which offered the opportunity for escapism, fun and new friendships was also a welcome break especially from all that [my son] and other young people have faced over recent years. He returned exhausted, exhilarated, inspired, thankful and determined to return to the seas! I think he surprised himself with how he coped and it has been a huge boost to his confidence. Thank you so much for the invaluable positive impact you have had on him.”

RYA sailing qualifications and DofE Gold Residential voyages available.

More information here on sailing with us.

For individual bookings on youth voyages, please contact VoyageAdmin@oytsouth.org.

Please note that voyages above are for people aged 11-25 and the next section is for adults 18+ with no upper limit – that means that people aged 18-25 can sail on either type of voyage.

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2024 voyages available for adults
These voyages are ideal for current volunteers who want a bit more experience, or an opportunity to enjoy sailing and to focus on their own skills, without supervising young people and helping them to do all the fun tasks on board instead of having the chance to do them yourself! Adult voyages are also used to select and train new volunteers, as well as for other adults who simply want to come for a holiday or to enjoy sailing Prolific. Please note that people aged 18-25 can sail on either youth voyages or adult voyages; but these adult voyages are the only option for those over 25.

3-5 May, Southampton, 2 nights, age range 18+, £255 per person, adult weekend voyage (Friday evening to Sunday evening)
11-13 Oct, Southampton, 2 nights, age range 18+, £255 per person, adult weekend voyage (Friday evening to Sunday evening)

There may also be a longer adult voyage – dates to be confirmed to fit around the demand from youth clients.

For adult bookings and volunteer training / selection voyages, please contact SeaStaffAdmin@oytsouth.org.

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South Coast Boat Show – help needed
Prolific will once again be at the heart of the South Coast Boat Show in Ocean Village, which this year runs from 19th – 21st April. We will need lots of volunteers on board to show visitors around, talk about the charity, collect money and sell bacon rolls! Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you’d like to come and help.

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2024 AGM – a date for your diary
Advance notice that OYT South’s 2024 AGM date has been set for 9th November.

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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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Prolific earrings inspired by a crew member  – shortlisted for an award! PLEASE VOTE
Our studs have been shortlisted for Ethical Gift of the Year! The shortlist has now moved to a public vote so please click the link and vote for our earrings!

These very special earrings weredesigned by Vurchoo based on a drawing by a Prolific crew member and with part of the proceeds coming to us to support our charitable work! You can read the full story here.

£40 in either gold or silver – click the pictures to see how to buy them.

Gold earrings Silver earrings

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Raise funds for OYT South if you’re shopping online
we’ve made nearly £1,800 through Easyfundraising!
“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 nearly £1,800 through Easyfundraising – huge thanks to everyone who has used it!

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OYT South social media – please share as well as liking!
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. We are also on TikTok. 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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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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