A Trinity House “Elder” dressed in full regalia had his swords ready for keeping order as the Helford River Children’s Sailing Trust celebrated the addition of seven new boats to their fleet.
The inspirational children’s charity which has taught thousands of Cornish youngsters to sail, including many with disabilities and special needs, was able to buy the vessels thanks to more than £30,000 of funding support from the Duchy Health Charity, Trinity House and five Cornish businesses.
Two new Whaly 435 safety boats, costing £12,000 apiece, were funded by Trinity House and the Duchy Health Charity – which supports projects and organisations promoting the health and wellbeing of the people of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.
Meanwhile the Trust’s dedication to young people also won on-going support from the nearby Budock Vean country house hotel, Digs Property, Watson Marlow, Cornish Holiday Cottages and Steve Harman from Gunwalloe – each donating £1,500 towards five Pico sailing dinghies.
“Over twenty years the Trust has taken more than 5000 children out on the river to learn to sail or kayak or row and we’ve seen the huge benefits they gain in terms of confidence and fitness as well as simply having fun in the great outdoors,” said Joint Chairman of the HRCST Richard Nathan.
“But we couldn’t do any of this without our scores of volunteers and, of course, the good-will and generosity of the organisations and individuals who support the Trust’s work with young people. To be able to add one much-needed boat to our fleet is always great but to get seven at once is overwhelming!”
This is the Duchy Health Charity’s third substantial grant to the Trust which it believes makes a real difference to the lives of young people.
“We’ve seen time and again how the Trust gives youngsters a unique opportunity to participate in a healthy, life-transforming experience,” said DHC’s Sally-Jane Coode. “It couldn’t be done without an impressive team of volunteers and they couldn’t operate if the Trust wasn’t so brilliantly well run – it’s something which catches the hearts and imaginations of very many people.”
The Trust’s 150 volunteers now operate a combined fleet of around 80 craft – and the seven new boats, named after their seven sponsors, are replacing other vessels which have seen many years of trusty service.