Business community backs youth sailing

The Cayman Islands Sailing Club’s popular youth sailing programme has received strong backing from the local business community.

All seven ‘Byte’ class sailing dinghies for children and young adults have been sponsored by important local businesses.

Three of the fleet have been sponsored by Butterfield Bank, two by law firm Stuarts Walker Hersant, and one each by telecommunications company Digicel and law firm Conyers Dill & Pearman.

Each of the Bytes, which are sailed regularly by participants of the CISC’s youth programme, will carry the logo of the sponsor on each side of its hull as well as on the sail.

The boats will soon have an opportunity to be raced against each other in a Sponsors’ Regatta, the details of which will be announced shortly.

The Byte sponsors join an increasingly impressive roll call of businesses supporting the CISC in some form or another. Existing and in many cases long-term sponsors of the Club include Andro Group, Bank Austria, Cable & Wireless, Deutsche Bank, Fortis, Harbour House Marina, Kirk Office, KPMG, Red Sail Sports and Royal Bank of Canada.

The support for the CISC’s youth programme represents another substantial boost to the fast-growing Club and associated National Sailing Centre, the national authority for sailing in the Cayman Islands.

This year alone, the Club has more than doubled the size of its fleet to comprise two rescue boats, seven Picos, seven Bytes, four Fevas, four Lasers, four Optimists and a J22, while the size of its membership has increased by about 30%.

In addition, the CISC Clubhouse will shortly gain a new extension to provide a covered teaching area and additional storage capacity as well as an enhanced viewing platform for people wishing to watch the sailing on the North Sound.

The four Fevas – two-person youth racing boats – are also available for sponsorship at a cost of $6,000 per boat. Any business interested in sponsoring either the whole boat or sponsoring one jointly with any firm should call Michael Weber, the Director of Sailing, on 926 7913.

The CISC is optimistic that it can help youngsters to develop into possible future Olympic sailors and follow in the footsteps of those Caymanians who have proudly represented the country at past Summer Games.

The emphasis is on fun – lots of fun – but also on skill progression and seamanship. Students are able to achieve certification as they progress through various skill levels.

Local schools are increasingly involved with sailing and in recognition of the increasingly close partnership between the public schools and the Club, the government has said that it will be increasing its support of the Club.

‘Sailing as a sport teaches discipline and teamwork, improves self-esteem and confidence and encourages the development of maturity and responsibility,’ said Andrew Moon, the Commodore of the CISC. He added that he was extremely grateful to Butterfield Bank, Stuarts Walker Hersant, Digicel and Conyers Dill & Pearman for supporting the youth sailing programme.

‘The Club is more than a private social club and, as the national authority for sailing in the Cayman Islands, has an obligation to the community to develop sailing both as a recreational pastime and as a competitive sport as well as to enhance safety,’ he said. ‘The Club’s future growth will be from the youth of these Islands. We are grateful to our sponsors and their good citizenship for providing funds which enable the Club to meet its obligations.’

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