UKSA in Cowes is on course to inspire the next generation of sailors after joining RYA OnBoard – the national grassroots scheme which makes it easier and cheaper to get more young people on the water.
OnBoard gives anyone aged 8-18 the chance to learn to sail by providing low cost opportunities for schools, youth groups and families to have fun afloat. There is the chance for members of Girlguiding IW to get involved and get sailing.
Hannah Cockle, OnBoard Operations Officer, comments; “It’s great to welcome UKSA to the OnBoard programme. Sailing is a fantastic sport no matter what your age, background or ability. We look forward to working with the Association and the local community to get as many people as possible enjoying our great sport.”
Gary Kurth, UKSA’s Watersports Manager says ‘UKSA is proud to be working with OnBoard to promote first time sailing experiences for young people. The Isle of Wight is an ideal location for getting your feet wet and with the enthusiasm of our watersports team, we’re looking forward inspiring the next generation of sailing enthusiasts.”
Becoming an OnBoard club is an exciting development for UKSA. The OnBoard programme will enable many young people to access sailing and its benefits. Through the regular attendance of the programme we will support and further encourage young people to develop and take part in racing events and progress in other opportunities through sailing.”
Run by sailing’s national governing body the RYA, OnBoard isn’t about producing champions, although many youngsters do go on to excel in dinghy and windsurf racing. It is about local youngsters discovering what an exciting, challenging, sociable or simply relaxing outdoor activity sailing can be. As a recognised RYA Training Centre UKSA conforms to the highest standards of safety and quality.
Alistair Dickson, RYA Director of Sport Development, said: “We are delighted to welcome UKSA OnBoard.” He adds “OnBoard is all about a fun, safe and structured introduction to sailing. It is fantastic that more youngsters on the Island will have the opportunity to be introduced to sailing and be nurtured to become life-long participants within the sport. As we now know, sailing not only provide participants with a hugely rewarding life-hobby, but they can also provide participants with character attributes which are clearly evidenced to help young people to really get on in life.”
Since 2005, OnBoard has helped over three quarters of a million young people try sailing and windsurfing and learn an activity that often stays with them for life.
Discover how you can get OnBoard at UKSA at http://www.rya.org.uk/onboard