Sint Maarten Yacht Club acquired 11 new boats with funding from R4CR to increase local participation in sailing.
January 18, 2022 – Simpson Bay, Sint Maarten
The Sint Maarten Yacht Club launched its 11 newly acquired boats last month, during the Progress Ceremony of the Sailing School. As the ceremony welcomed all the parents and students of the sailing program, it became the ideal moment to recognize the important addition to the fleet as it will greatly contribute to the further development of the youth sailing program. It also served as an opportunity to recognize the success of 4 months of free sailing classes offered to 2 primary schools, introducing 24 local youngsters to sailing. Six of the new boats are RS Zests, which are replacing the Laser Pico Fleet. These boats are great for kids as well as beginner adults. In addition 5 Sail Qubes were purchased to add to the Optimist Fleet for our younger and beginning sailors. With these new boats the Sint Maarten Yacht Club will be able to continue growing its Primary School Sailing Program, allowing for more local youth to be introduced to sailing and the marine industry.
A total of 24 students from the Seventh Day Adventist School and the Sister Regina Primary School have been enjoying free sailing classes on a weekly basis for the last 4 months. In previous years this Program has been supported by the private sector through sponsorship from ACE, Liccom, Ice and Kooyman. This year the SMYC applied for additional funding from the World Trust Fund, with assistance from R4CR, serving 3 main goals; expansion of the SMYC fleet, adding an extra school to the primary school sailing program (12 extra students) offering free sailing classes for a school year, and introducing the ‘Swim 2 Sail’ program.
The ‘Swim 2 Sail’ program provides swimming classes for those children who require to develop their swimming level before they can start sailing. In collaboration with Mr. Busby as swimming teacher, four children participated in this program and developed their swimming level with the goal to join the sailing program when their level is good enough.
“It is great to see the progress and motivation with all children that are joining the Primary School Sailing Program and the ‘Swim 2 Sail Program’. Whether they are developing their swimming skills or sailing skills, all children go through their own process at their own pace. More importantly, besides teaching sailing and swimming, we teach the children life skills such as teamwork, building up confidence, overcoming fear, communication and commitment”. Said Sam Peeks, Sailing Instructor at the SMYC.
The SMYC would like to thank the World Trust Fund and R4CR for this great opportunity to strengthen the foundation of our sailing school, make sailing available for more of the Sint Maarten youth and set up the ‘Swim 2 Sail’ program.
Would you like to have more information about this project? Contact Saskia@smyc.com
About the Sint Maarten Yacht Club:
Established in 1980 with the goal to promote sailing on the island of St Maarten. It organizes multiple sailing events throughout the year, with the St Maarten Heineken Regatta as its crown jewel. A youth sailing program stimulates local youngsters to become part of the sailing community, teaching them life skills like team work, perseverance and confidence. Always looking to further develop sailing on St Maarten, the Club is active in promoting the sport, as well as the beautiful destination it is located at. For more information visit www.smyc.com