Sailors with disABILITIES

Hobart Outreach Program Launch

Launching today, February 15, ten schools and over 250 children with disabilities will take part in our annual Hobart Outreach Program. This is the second year it has been held, with WOT EVA carrying children in wheelchairs. All children have a chance to steer the boat, wind the winches, help lift and lower the sails.

SWD founder David Pescud says this is often a once in a lifetime experience for these children.

Clarence High School was the first school off the block this morning. At the start, one student declared "I'm scared of the boat, I want to go back to school!" only to end up steering on the helm by the end of the sail! 

Clarence High School on WOT EVA in Hobart, 2017

Clarence High Hobart 15 Feb 2017

The impact of the experience on children in Hobart last year is testament to the program as the following testimonial shows:

"As an indication of the impact it had on students, I can relate this short story. We have a young girl in high school for the first time with extreme anxiety and an intellectual disability. She has been struggling to stay at school. We managed to get her aboard on day one with her mum. On day two, she came to school and was struggling. We offered her the chance to sail again as we had a space left in another booking. She leapt at the chance and, by the end of the sail, we could see her confidence grow. This interaction with school support staff was very positive and allowed staff to continue to build a relationship based on trust, security and understanding that has continued all year. She has been at school every day since and has now become a valuable mentor to two other students with disability. Sailing allowed her to succeed and also to feel valued. She was also able to make stronger connections with her teacher aide support."

Clarence High School on WOT EVA in Hobart, 2017

Clarence High Hobart 15 Feb 2017