What we do
OFFSHORE is a charity that was founded in 1964. We have been providing life-changing sailing adventures for over 50 years!
Our aim is simple; help young people discover their sense of adventure! In the process participants develop a wide range of transferable skills that will stand them in good stead for the rest of their lives.
We run residential sailing voyages for young people and vulnerable adults. Our beneficiaries form an integral part of the crew and participate in all activities aboard. This includes working together to sail the boat and also being responsible for the domestic chores such as cooking and cleaning.
Resilience, communication skills, teamwork, confidence, respect for others are just a few of the skills that are developed whilst sailing and living on board a yacht at sea.
Our charitable goal is to provide, through the medium of sail training, opportunities for young people and vulnerable adults to discover their sense of adventure, in the process developing transferrable skills that will aid their educational, personal and social development.
Life at sea is unfamiliar and testing, helping to build personal resilience and broaden participants’ horizons, as well as the courage to push beyond one’s own comfort zone. Being in such a challenging environment breaks down boundaries, creates parity between people of different backgrounds, and enhances the sense of accomplishment at the end of any activity. This often gives participants a greater sense of self-belief and purpose as they discover what they are capable of.
Teamwork onboard is essential, as activities such as hoisting a sail require the crew to pull together. Other activities see crew fulfilling different roles such as one steering and another keeping a lookout, which require trust and good communication between all involved. There is a great emphasis on personal responsibility, often through simple things like being expected to wake up and be ready on deck to take an overnight watch. A similar emphasis is placed on collective responsibility, with the crew on a rota for preparing food and cleaning. These behaviours can help trainees’ employability and are equally important for social development and for day to day living.
We aim to give everyone an enjoyable voyage with us and for them to be inspired to continue adventuring after they leave. Our voyages and the training we offer provides a pathway from the first taster sail right through to becoming a volunteer skipper.
Of course it isn’t all about the sailing. During the last season, we asked each of our participants what our trips meant to them, and this is what they said:
89% said they had learned a new skill.
81% said they felt more confident.
80% said their voyage was memorable.
79% said they felt happier as a result.
75% said they had developed better relationships with others.
71% said they were more likely to try new things in the future.