The Tall Ships Youth Trust was named as British Marine’s first ever “Charity of the Year” at last night’s Black Tie Dinner despite fierce competition from other charities.

British Marine’s Mike Enser said it had been difficult choosing between charities all doing good work but that “what makes the Trust stand out is its networking with other youth organisations and its strong governance and management.”

Receiving the Award on behalf of the Trust, Chief Executive Chris Law said “Our crew, staff and volunteers are absolutely delighted to win this prestigious Award particularly as 2016 is our 60th Diamond Jubilee. Each year our work makes a real difference to the lives of thousands of young people across the UK and this Award is a much appreciated recognition of the Trust’s impact and achievements and a wonderful thank-you to our team.”


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About the Trust

The Trust uses the power of residential sailing experiences to increase disadvantaged and disabled young people’s chances in life – developing their life skills, increasing their self-esteem, motivation and aspirations, getting them fitter and more active, encouraging them into volunteering and improving their employability.

It has a fleet of 7 vessels (residential youth centres) – 1 x 60m square rigged ship, 4 x 22m Challenger yachts, 1 x 19m catamaran, 1 x 16m ketch (previously schooners Malcolm Miller and Sir Winston Churchill).

Activities are physically and mentally challenging, covering all aspects of working and living together in a close communal residential setting at sea – from sailing and navigation to maintaining and repairing equipment, preparing food and cleaning.

The Trust takes 2,700 individuals to sea a year. Over 75% of the young people are disadvantaged and disabled. 20% of the young people are recommended to return as volunteers.

Volunteers donated 115,000 hours to the Trust last year.

Third parties describe Trust voyages as:-

  • “a unique setting for developing life and social skills” (Youth Worker)
  • “a more powerful tool than any other outward bound activity we’ve used” (Teacher)
  • “an excellent turnaround method” (Policeman).

Ofsted Report Dec 2015 – Trust voyages “enable pupils to develop their physical, social and emotional skills through working as part of a team while sailing the vessel”

Nikki (20): “The voyage took me away from home and a light just went on in my head – I thought that’s it, no more drink for me”

Josh (17) “If I can do this, I can anything!”

Imran (19): Ancient political anger, cultural differences, even language barriers fade away. At the end of the day we sit together…..as though being together is the most natural thing in the world….. I think it is.”