The Largs Academy May Achievers programme has been set up to allow groups of young people, who are not studying for higher SQA exams, gain life skills which will help them in the wider world once having left school. The hugely successful programme gives pupils hands on experiences such as barista training and sailing trips to name a few.
Ocean Youth Trust Scotland were delighted to host three day sails for the programme. The first trip was on Tuesday 23rd May, starting with glorious weather for the three pupils and their teacher. The crew sailed 15 nautical miles with the boat tipping far over to the excitement of all. Day 2’s voyagers, three pupils and a teacher, had less wind, a little bit of rain and sailed 10 nautical miles however were graced by the arrival of an entire pod of dolphins coming to play with them! The final day, 25th May, was very foggy for the two pupils and teacher. There was so much fog that the crew were taught to use the on board navigation systems, including modern GPS charts and their own air horn, to sail the River Clyde with other seafaring vessels. Thankfully the last day ended on a high with the sun deciding to shine through to welcome the young sailors back to shore.
All three voyages started at 9am on the yacht Alba Volunteer, with lunch on the boat and finishing by 3pm. All of the students successfully received official OYT Scotland certificates for taking part and had a wonderful time. Clare Bethell, Wider Achievement & STEM Co-ordinator for North Ayrshire Council, said ‘Thank you to the OYT for providing an excellent opportunity for the Largs Academy May Achievers pupils to sail on the Clyde. The pupils had a fantastic experience which has increased their awareness of the variety of activities that they can participate in. The day on the boat has improved the confidence, team working and resilience of the young people.’
Hopefully Largs Academy will have more May Achievers voyages in the future which will be as successful and enjoyable as this years. Well done to everyone involved.