From Ros Barnett:
'Getting kids involved has been a huge part of our purpose ever since the Living Boat Trust started back in 1998.
The Franklin Primary School children that built the Rhonda K are adults now, and many of them will have children of their own. The Geeveston teenagers who created Lightwood Bottom are young adults, and the graduates of the first formal On Water Program (OWP) are at college. The hundreds of people who came to the launch of Swiftsure II are ten years older and wiser.
I like to imagine that when all the youngsters who have passed through the shed are older they will remember their days with the Trust as real stand outs, and will fondly recall pulling hard on an oar to get over the line at the Swiftsure Regatta of their year. They will think of themselves as someone who can handle a dinghy and be confident around the water, even if their daily lives revolve more around a desk or a tractor.
The regatta is the Trust’s major event of the year. It is the culmination of the On Water Program for the children, and a time for them to compete and show off the skills they have acquired.
Boat builders choose it as a time to show off their new craft (I know I did in 2007 with my little Acorn dinghy), and the restorations come out with brass polished and bunting flying just to show off. Adult teams are formed, built and busted in the Swiftsure time trials. Crack teams vie for honours in the St Ayles skiffs.
This week the local primary schools begin their On Water Program, and over the next eight weeks there will be regular training sessions. You can get involved as a trainer or coach, as a timekeeper or catering helper, or be a participant. Start by emailing me at email@example.com.
The most important date in the Living Boat Trust calendar is the Swifsture Regatta. If you are only able to give one day per year make sure it is 7th December.'