Collaborative KATS-RBVIYC Learn to Sail Program gets underway

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RBVIYC Instructor, Omari Scott, introducing sailing terms to students before heading out on the waterOn Saturday September 22, the first collaborative Learn to Sail program between Kids And The Sea (KATS) and the Royal BVI Yacht Club (RBVIYC) started.  This 10-week introduction to sailing and water safety has been made possible by combining the efforts of both organisations which call Nanny Cay their home.

Brian Duff, director of sailing development at the RBVIYC, and Chris Ghiorse, executive director of KATS, have been talking for the past six months about how they could introduce more youth to sailing. 

“We wanted to create a program that could reach out and find students interested in learning to sail while, at the same time, providing a very economical solution to enable students to participate.  The result is the creation of this program we just started,” said Ghiorse.

KATS is an organization that can locate children who normally would have little or no opportunity to try sports like sailing.  The infrastructure the RBVIYC can provide makes an introductory program like this sustainable.  The organisations plan to offer this program at the start of each school trimester and hope is to enable students to maintain their interest beyond this first step in sailing.  The RBVIYC can provide the necessary skills needed to progress to the highest levels, including competitive sailing.

There are many reasons teaching children to sail are important for our community: the BVI is often marketed as “the sailing capital of the world” and the job opportunities are endless for sailors; sailing is an Olympic sport and there are hidden talents that are yet to be discovered; finally, and the most important one to KATS, is to provide children with a wider range of safe experiences in or on the sea at little to no cost.

KATS and the RBVIYC are looking for financial support to facilitate and continue initiatives such as this “Learn to Sail” program.

For more information regarding how to help sustain or participate in all the KATS programs (swimming, basic, sailing and SCUBA) please contact Chris at 346-5287 or email ghiorse@surfbvi.com.  For the RBVIYC please contact Brian at 499-0352 or email youthsailing@royalbviyc.org.