We are pleased to receive feedback from individuals who have benefited from the support provided by the Trust. The following selection of testimonials speak for themselves in highlighting the value of the Trust’s work.
I thought the training scheme was a great opportunity as I’ve lived next to the sea all my life but never made the most of it. We started our sailing courses in April, there was lots of us so it’s even a great way to meet people and that lead to a really fun week!
They teach you so much it’s all a bit woah but by the end of the week when your sailing your own little pico round the harbour, You feel so proud of yourself!
The next week I found out I made the top five to be trained up as an instructor was overwhelming, I’ve always worked in bars n clubs in Weymouth so this was such an amazing opportunity, I grabbed it with both hands.
I then went onto do a 16 week training course in which we shadowed instructors working with schools, race teams, families etc.
The instructors are amazing and will go out their way to help you! At the end of 16 weeks we was booked in for our instructors final course and what a week it was! It was pressure but a fun week well worth it!
Before I qualified my instructor always said he wanted to see me teaching sailing abroad and that was my goal, I’ve never worked so hard for something! It changed my life from working in a bar with unsociable work hours to working outside having fun! Not once did I not want to go; it wasn’t like a job at all! I then applied for a company called Neilson to work overseas. It’s the biggest interview I’ve ever had, it meant so much to me! I got the job and went to work in Greece for two months…I cannot put into words how proud I am of myself for doing this. It proved I can do anything I put my mind to and I can now travel the world and teach sailing!
I’m heading out to oz in the new year to start a new life in which I’m taking my new skill to help me! If anyone gets this opportunity I say grab it with both hands and feet. It’s amazing!
I wanna say a huge thank you to the people who funded this.
Natelie Plant, Employment project participant
Thank you for your wonderful donation to our school, which enabled us to take a year 8 class on an amazing sailing trip to the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy. Our pupils could not stop talking about our trip to anyone in our school community that would listen to them.
Stormont House School, London
Thank you for providing funding. Most of the children achieved both level 1 and 2 certificates and all reported they enjoyed it. Three children are particularly keen to continue with sailing. One child has also decided to join the Sea Cadets. Feedback from parents has been extremely positive. One parent informed us “I have never known (name) to be enthusiastic about anything until he tried sailing.” For a variety of reasons many of the children would not have otherwise been offered the fantastic opportunity, so many thanks again for supporting our work.
Weymouth & Portland Youth Inclusion and Support Panel
I really enjoyed Windsurfing and it really let me relax and learn a fun new sport. The Teachers were really helpful and they taught me when I got it wrong. It was nerve- wrecking and exhilarating & it really made me want to take up windsurfing as a new hobby. I was really happy I got the opportunity to do this and it is one of my best memories from school.
I really enjoyed windsurfing, it was great fun and I had a great time. It was a fantastic opportunity, it was only five pounds for 10 sessions, this made it affordable and I would like to do it again if the opportunity arises. The instructors were really helpful even though I was rubbish at it I did feel like I had learnt a lot by the end of the course.
As a classroom teacher it is a great opportunity and experience to see students engaged in a different type of activity. I could see the pleasure they got from the course and hope to see some of them out on the water in the future. This type of activity brings the best out of all students, especially those who find classroom learning difficult.
I hope this is something we can run regularly, and hope its windier next year as well so they can really experience the rush of blasting across the water.
Mr Lea Spencer, Teacher IPACA
“The opportunities at the OTC are fantastic and are transforming my life. Starting with windsurf for a Fiver and with the support of The Will Mackaness Trust and the OTC I have progressed into the T15 group and love the freedom and excitement of windsurfing. It has inspired me to work hard so I can buy my own equipment and keep developing.”
Callum Coleman – Wey Valley Year 10 student
The community around here should be more water sports based, but the barrier to participation is always the same – opportunity and experience. Who is going to take me, how much is it going to cost?
The windsurf/SUP for a fiver is a fantastic opportunity for many students to participate; I know that if it was more expensive, you would be turning away a large cohort of our community.
The Windsurf/SUP for a fiver has been inspirational for many of our students and allowed all students regardless of wealth to access activities not always open to them.
The Wey Valley School
The students thoroughly enjoyed their introduction to windsurfing. They were all complete beginners and some were quite nervous in the water but afterwards they were brimming with pride at their efforts and full of enthusiasm for another go! It was a great confidence boosting activity and as the sports coordinator at the academy I would definitely organise another trip next year.
The Sir John Colfox Academy
The students who would benefit from participation in outdoor and adventurous activities the most, often cannot afford it. Some parents are extremely supportive and give their children opportunities to take part in a variety of experiences; these experiences can often lead to increased participation, competition and much improved health and well-being. Unfortunately many students are not, or believe these activities are out of reach. The windsurf for a fiver had been very popular this year as a result of early advertisement and weather conditions and building on previous success.
“I love it, it’s also funny when your friends fall in, even though, I normally fall in straight after.”In a world of quantifiable results, most of the benefits to outdoor recreation cannot be scored, or put into statistical data. The potential benefits are more soft. Resilience, self-esteem, group dynamics and life-long participation are the results I observe on a weekly basis.
Rich Bullock – Budmouth Sport
“Windsurf for a fiver has been a fantastic opportunity for Wey Valley School students to sample water sports on their door step. Some of these students have never been to the Sailing Academy and have little opportunity to learn and play in the water where they live. The low cost is vital to allow students of all situations and schools to access and promote these great activities and sports. What is even more impressive is that from this small acorn students have grown and have got further involved in water sports, becoming qualified and working with the OTC with our students. It has also allowed students to gain team building and resilience skills amongst other things.”
Mark Salmon – Head of Outdoor Learning and Year Leader WVS
“Hi Eden just wanted to say a massive thankyou to you and the team. The children had the most wonderful afternoon and the support of your staff enabled them (and us) to really enjoy and thrive during the afternoon.”
James Houston – St Mary’s Bridport
“Thanks so much for arranging the session today. Despite the weather, the children loved sailing, they are still buzzing on the bus! Please thank the staff who worked with us, they were all so good with the children and made sure the session was fun for everyone.”
Sharon Holt – Sandford Primary School
“I have to thank you so much for today. The children were absolutely buzzing on the way home. Their best bit (apparently) was the jumping in at the end!”
Tracey Jones – Pimperne Primary School
Your support has enabled young people in Portland to get out of on the water and experience the joys and challenges of sailing and watersports – some for the very first time. Thank you so much! One of the young people who has benefitted from the support of the Chesil Sailing Trust and Andrew Simpson Centre Portland is Billie. You can learn more about Billie’s story by watching this short video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?
Ruth Brady, Andrew Simpson Foundation