On Course with CashBack Update

With the 2018 season well underway we’ve already welcomed four CashBack for Communities groups.

Inverclyde Academy

The first was local group Inverclyde Academy who set off on Alba Explorer on 2nd April, visiting Tarbert, Portavadie and Holy Loch. Despite the freezing cold and windy conditions, the young people rose to the challenge of helming the boat, cooking for the crew of 18, and learning lots along the way. By the end of the week the sun came out and the group really came together, working well as a team and being proactive in helping out where needed.

Group leader Paul Ross said, “The young people from Inverclyde Academy showed great determination and resilience to push themselves through challenging conditions to take part and complete the school’s first Ocean Youth Trust Scotland voyage… feedback from the group highlighted that they had experiences that would stay with them for the rest of their life.”

Thanks to our crew, Skipper Steve Morrison, 1st Mate James Hall, and volunteers Nigel Vear, Claire Duncan and Bernard Abbot. Finally, our Bosun Kashi Jordan who this year will be taking part in our Young Leaders Development Programme.

Connect Berwickshire

Next up was Connect Berwickshire Youth Project on Alba Venturer. Setting sail from Greenock on 9th April, the group faced some rough weather and tough conditions at the beginning of the week. Sailing a total of 180 nautical miles, the group pulled together by the end of the week visiting Holy Loch, Campbeltown and Tarbert.

The crew this time were Skipper Craig McNeil, volunteers 1st Mate Colin Boyd, and Watchleaders Olivia Bennett and Alan Stewart, and Kashi was on board as Bosun again.

Our last two groups, Larkhall Academy and Port Glasgow I-Zone, both set off on the 16th April.

Port Glasgow I-Zone

Port Glasgow I-Zone sailed on Alba Explorer with Nick Fleming and James Hall, volunteers 1st Mate Graeme Cawthorne, Watchleader Andrew Gerrard and Olivia Bennett, and cadet Lewis as Bosun. The group of 8 young people and 2 group leaders visited Tarbert, Portavadie and Holy Loch.

Dealing with some rough weather, the group did extremely well to pull together and work as a team, helping each other out to get jobs done and developing as individuals. Some of the highlights of the trip included the fun games they played in the evening and getting the chance to see the stunning scenery, whilst learning lots and gaining new skills.

Larkhall Academy

At the same time, Larkhall Academy were on board Alba Venturer and visited Tarbet, Loch Ranza, and Rhu. The group faced some rough and wild weather with the foredeck turning into a swimming pool at one point! Despite this, all the young people really came out of their shells by the end of the week and became a team. The group leaders and sea staff were exceptionally proud of all of the young people for persevering through the difficult times and showing real resilience and determination, a lesson which will stay with them for the future.

The crew this time were Skipper Craig Hodgart, 1st Mate Stuart Picken, our Watchleaders Bernard Abbot and cadet Molly Whitney, and volunteer Graham Benson.

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