Students learn sailing skills

Jerrol Derby, Dejaun Powis and Marcus McField make their way to shore in the dinghy. - Photos: Jewel Levy
Jerrol Derby, Dejaun Powis and Marcus McField make their way to shore in the dinghy. – Photos: Jewel Levy

A group of North Side youngsters is getting an introduction to one of Cayman’s more popular water sports.

Twice a week, Cayman Islands Sailing Club instructors are leading 15 Year five Edna M. Moyle Primary School students in dinghy sailing lessons. The eight-week session of two-hour sailing lessons started on Jan. 11, running on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

“This is great for team-building and social skills,” said teacher Janice Brown, watching the action from shore on March 1 at the Frank Sound dock.

Above the squeals, shouts and laughter of students having fun, sailing instructors and a safety boat kept close watch over the students as they maneuvered and vied for first place heading out to sea. Before students pushed out, Sailing Club certified instructors Kelvin Brown and Rebecca Calvert gave some final instructions on what to do if the boats capsized, and supplied coordination techniques.

The sailing club’s government school sailing program is aimed at building students’ confidence on the water, along with developing their proficiency in the sport.

Raph Harvey, sailing club head coach, said the lessons offer kids the chance to experience the joys of navigating dinghies, as well as providing fitness coordination and building a love for the outdoors.

Students sail a dinghy to shore.
Students sail a dinghy to shore.

“What we are trying to do is introduce the kids to sailing and to be comfortable on the water. We also teach them about boats, such as rigging, joy riding and handling the boat by themselves,” he said.

All the sailing lessons are taught by Royal Yachting Association certified instructors, and all safety equipment and dinghies are supplied by the sailing club.

Nancy Boulmay, CISC’s club manager, said the sailing club is seeking a corporate sponsor for the government program.

“Without the support from the community and from businesses, we cannot afford to give our assistance to the schools.”

“The whole school program is funded by sponsorships,” Ms. Boulmay added, expressing her gratitude for all the support the program has received so far.

Students from North Side Primary, along with Sailing Club instructors, participated in a day of sailing at the Frank Sound dock on Tuesday.
Students from North Side Primary, along with Sailing Club instructors, participated in a day of sailing at the Frank Sound dock on Tuesday.
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