The Caribbean Sail Training Association announced today that the sail training vessel Wylde Swan, which is the largest two mast top sail schooner in the world, will set sail on Wednesday January 22, 2014 from the pier at Marina Fort Louis, for a Maritime Experience day trip with youngsters from St.Maarten and St.Martin.
Wylde Swan sailing
Some forty young people from the Sint Maarten Yacht Club, the Kids at Sea Foundation, the French side yachtclub and schools from both sides of the Island will be invited.
Together with sponsors the Maritime School of the West Indies, International Liquor and Tobacco Trading ( ITLC ), Budget Marine, YachtAssistance and Life Rafts Etc. a day of sailing on the Dutch Tall Ship Wylde Swan will be offered free of costs to the participating youth and teachers / instructors that will sail along.
The vessel Wylde Swan started her life as a ‘herring hunter’ in the 1920’s, working off the Shetland Islands.
She was a ship built for speed, ferrying the fresh catch from the fishing grounds to the markets ashore.
The Jemo, as she was originally called, was built by HDW in Kiel.
The ship was decommissioned sometime in the late 20th century and had changed ownership several times before the Dutchman Willem Slighting saw in her underwater ship the makings of a fast sailing ship.
Her sleek underwater hull is now part of a rugged sailing ship, reminiscent of the large schooner yachts of the 1900 era.
Wylde Swan on deck
The hull and complete vessel underwent a total conversion in 2010 and became the 'class A' sail training vessel which it is today.
Wylde Swan combines the majesty and tactics of the largest tall ships with the sailing characteristics and raw excitement normally only found on much smaller yachts.
It's no wonder that Wylde Swan is a fierce competitor for the first prize in any Tall Ships Race.
On the oceans, Wylde Swan offers world class sail training to people of all ages.
The ship, the crew and the operational concept are carefully matched to provide sail trainees with the experience of a lifetime.
In port Wylde Swan transforms into a handsome location for corporate hospitality. Business meetings, receptions and dinners are facilitated with quiet competence, while the renowned Wylde Swan Offshore Catering offers up mouthwatering dishes made with fresh, local ingredients that are sure to lease any guest's culinary palate.
The bow of Wylde Swan
The Caribbean Sail Training Association ( CSTA ) has been established several years ago as a registered nonprofit association with the aim to help in providing education and sail training towards young people of all nationalities, cultures, religions and social backgrounds and specially towards people living in the Caribbean.
In addition the CSTA is continuously helping the sail training vessels by providing all kind of services, docking and mooring fees for free or at reduced cost to those ships trough yacht agents, ports and harbors, marinas etc.
The Caribbean Sail Training Association basically receives funds and donations from businesses, private persons and other organizations.
Those funds are used to provide youngsters with sponsorship to board Tall Ships, sailing vessels and yachts as trainees so that they don't need to find the necessary money themselves.
Many of the Caribbean youth or their parents and family are not wealthy enough to come up with necessary funds to provide their youngsters a sail training term on board a vessel, so that's where the CSTA comes in to help.
As organization, the CSTA selects cooperating Tall ships, square riggers, schooners, classic boats, large yachts and even modern race boats that take youngsters on a sail training trip.
Wylde Swan stern
The CSTA provides the funds (each sail training vessel needs to ask money from trainees in addition to other sources in order to keep working and exist), they do all the paperwork, arrange and pay for transport to and from the ship (and airline tickets if necessary) and will pay for food and drinks and most of the expenses for the trainees.
The ultimate goal of the CSTA is to build, restore or acquire one day a Tall Ship to run sail training and educational programs at sea all year round for Caribbean and other youth...
The CSTA has invited many youngsters on sail training vessels, Tall Ships and yachts over the past years for a Maritime Experience Day mainly in co-operation with the Maritime School of the West Indies in St.Maarten and other sponsors like Budget Marine and International Liquor and Tobacco Trading ( ITLC ) who are again providing all the beverages on board of the vessel.
The CSTA organization also places youngsters on board those vessels for one and more weeks and pays the fees for them to do the training on board; they pay for all food and drinks and for airline or other transport to bring the trainees back to the Island from where they left.
The CSTA accepts requests from maritime related schools, marinas, harbors and institutions that are interested to place a student on one of the vessels for one or more weeks as a trainee.
Private persons, youngsters and parents, are also encouraged to contact the association to participate in a sailing adventure on board one of the ships.
Applicants need to have the minimum age of 15 and be not older than 25 years on most of the Tall Ships but sometimes older trainees are accepted on board sail training vessels.
The Caribbean Sail Training Association has also sponsored harbor, docking and other fees for several Sail Training Vessels and Tall Ships in the past where local port authorities had not reached an agreement with the CSTA as yet to provide free or reduced docking and other services to official sail training vessels that work with the CSTA.
Caribbean Sail Training Association