Five Renfrewshire-based young people from Kibble have completed a three-day sailing voyage around some of the West Coast’s most stunning locations, building skills in leadership, teamwork and self-reliance.

Setting off from the docks of Greenock, the young people, accompanied by four Kibble teachers and care staff, recently took part in a voyage, living and working aboard a 72-foot sailing yacht. Responsible for setting sail, mapping the route and keeping the vessel sparkling, they participated in the life-changing sailing adventures as guided by Ocean Youth Trust Scotland, a young person’s charity and floating education centre.

The group from Kibble, a specialist child and youth care charity, partnered the trust to offer the budding sailors a chance to build confidence and discover their potential through a new and engaging activity which would challenge them through positive, real-life experiences.

Photo: (left to Right) Gillian McDiarmid from Ocean Youth Trust with Jackie Blair from Kibble
Photo Credit: Kibble Education & Care Centre 

Kibble provides care for young people who have faced significant challenges in their lives, offering them a renewed chance at life through trauma-informed therapies and education, of which outdoor learning plays a major role. The leading charity has ensured getting out and about amongst the natural environment is a key part of the curriculum for all young people accessing Kibble services, following overwhelming research into the benefits of outdoor learning on health and wellbeing.

The five young people had no experience in sailing prior to the trip, however, through carefully guided lessons, the crew were able to visit Dunoon, Bute and Inverkip over the three-day adventure before safely docking the boat back in Greenock.

As well as finding their sea legs, the young people were able to have a bit of fun as the school term ends, while developing essential skills which will set them up for life, such as self-confidence, problem solving, responsibility and an awareness of their environment.

Sinclair Soutar, chief operating officer at Kibble said: “Experiences form so much of our view of the world and ourselves, which is why at Kibble we are continually looking for ways to broaden our young people’s encounters with the world, offering them endless opportunities to try something new and different.

“Courses like Ocean Youth Trust Scotland give our young people a chance to reframe their view of themselves, learn about a skill or interest they didn’t know they had, and most of all have some fun together.

“The Kibble crew were naturals on the water and showed exemplary teamwork throughout the trip. I think we all came away with a refreshed take on life, smiles on our faces, and one or two midge bites!”

Gillian McDiarmid at Ocean Youth Trust Scotland said: “At sea so much can change in an instant, you must then be able to react in a measured and responsible way to protect yourself as well as your crew – much like life, which is why Our Cashback for Communities development programme is so impactful for young people who perhaps haven’t had the chance to build such skills.

“The best thing during the voyage with Kibble was seeing young people realise they can do that thing they assumed thought they couldn’t. Our courses use real and honest physical, mental and emotional challenges to encourage young people to push past their boundaries and discover what they are truly capable of, and our crew of five from Kibble more than proved that they can do anything they put their minds to.”

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