The RSYC Trust is the Club’s own charity, which places young people at its centre.
The charity was established in 2016 to promote the advancement of amateur sport, in particular the provision of facilities and equipment, including the awarding of grants to enable and encourage participation in sailing and associated activities for the benefit of the public in the south of England.
To make such a wide remit more manageable, we have chosen to focus on providing on-the-water activities for disadvantaged young people, principally young carers in Hampshire. Our underlying objectives are education and wellbeing based: offering new skills, helping over 150 young carers each year to grow in confidence and resilience, gain physical literacy and improve their mental health and wellbeing by being active.
The charity, which is run by a small group of trustees, chaired by past Commodore Brian Hinde, meets regularly throughout the year to plan and coordinate a broad programme of water sports and supporting activities, which take place in the school holidays from Easter through to September. These include instructor-led taster and training sessions leading to certification, activity days, national opportunities eg Tall Ships, and new in 2023, a regatta to mark the end of the summer season.
Young carer focus
Young carers are children and young people aged 8-19 who care for a family member with a long term illness or disability; this could be a parent or sibling. The impact of being a young carer is profound as children as young as eight take on the practical and emotional caring that most of us only take on as adults. Furthermore, this demanding role means that they are often not able to take part in after school activities and clubs and be carefree in the way we would want young people to be.
In summary, the RSYC Trust offers a unique opportunity for young carers to learn new skills, build their confidence, do something active and have some much needed fun, by taking part in water sports and activities in a planned and safe way.
Throughout the summer we offer a range of different activities to suit young people at all stages of confidence in and around the water. For example we run taster sessions and taster days for complete beginners so they can try-out new sports including sailing, paddle boarding, kayaking and new in 2023 – wind surfing and refresher sessions for those who want to take qualifications.
We put a high premium on the concept of progression: we want to support young carers to be the best they can be. This means that we encourage them to develop their new skills and take nationally recognised proficiency qualifications. Many your carers who first joined us in 2018 have developed their sailing skills and moved on to the RYA Youth Sailing Scheme.
The RYA Sailing Scheme has provided to be a big hit with over 45 young carers achieving RYA certification between stages 1 to 4. One of our aims is to build on this success and support many more youngsters to work through the scheme.
This year we will be running four water activity days at Gins – on Tuesday 30 May, Monday 24 July, Tuesday 25 July and Monday 21 August. The days are designed to give young people a well-earned break and greater confidence on the water. Activities include sailing, kayaking, paddle boarding , raft building, river trips and crabbing. The young carers are invited to bring family members to watch the action and to enjoy a picnic on the banks of the Beaulieu River at Gins.
We are pleased to work in partnership with two local sailing organisations, which provide the expert instructors and facilities: SWAC (Southampton Water Activities Centre) and Spinnaker Sailing Club (Ringwood). We also work closely with young carer organisations in Winchester, Romsey, the New Forest and Southampton. We would like to extend our offer to include more young carer organisations but we are limited by our ability to bid for and win funding in challenging times.
Funding and sponsorship
The RSYC Trust does not receive any statutory funding or funding from the RSYC Club, apart from small member donations and money we raise through fund raising activities, eg social events, duck races, raffles etc. Our programme of activities is wholly reliant on raising funds through applications to larger charities, local councils and sports organisations such as the RYA and Sport England and local foundations supporting local communities.
The trustees regularly apply for local and national grants and awards: the more income we are able to attract, the more activities and experiences we can offer. For example during 2020 we were able to obtain 6 paddle boards through a grant from The Skipton Building Society. Last year we benefited from a significant donation made in the name of Stephen Parry, Rear Commodore Sailing who sadly died, and was a great supporter of youth and Solent events. Our funding also pays for the instructor-led sessions, qualifications, activity days and regatta that we organise, plus equipment including protective head gear, buoyancy aid and wet suits.
If you work with an organisation that has a heart, and maybe a social responsibility/charity budget heading, or would like to make provision for a donation or bequest, please talk to us.
RSYC 50/50 draw
The Club’s own monthly draw is an excellent way to support the RSYC Trust. The draw is easy to join, with payment by Direct Debit and the rules are simple: 50% of the monthly pot goes to the lucky winner and 50% to the Commodore’s charity, which is of course the RSYC Trust.
Tickets cost £5 each (you can pay for more than one per month if you choose). Just email firstname.lastname@example.org. Joining today means that you can be part of the next draw. You can choose to opt-in or opt-out at any time (the full rules are on the website).
Next time you are asked to contribute to a charity, please think of the RSYC Trust and consider joining the 50/50 monthly draw (you have a fair chance of winning half the monthly pot over the next 12 months!
Donations and bequests
Making a donation to the RSYC Trust is easy. You can leave cash or cheques [made out to The Royal Southampton Yacht Club Trust] at Gins or by bank transfer:
- The Royal Southampton Yacht Club Trust (Lloyds bank)
- Sort code 30 90-54
- Account 32571760
Or follow this link to donate through Just Giving – https://checkout.justgiving.com/wq2dvzut4i.
Instructors and Volunteers
As you can imagine, running the Gins water activities days and regatta alone requires thorough planning, risk assessments, DBS checks, a well-equipped first aid kit and unflappable volunteers and RYA qualified instructors.
If you are an RYA, kayak or paddle board instructor or have youth work experience or are qualified to drive a powerboat/safety support boat and would like to volunteer, please contact email@example.com. Dinghy sailors, safety boat drivers, and raft builders are especially welcome but a willingness to give time plus kindness and compassion are the most important qualifications.