Bermuda Sloop Foundation awards night
The Bermuda Sloop Foundation celebrated its participants, volunteers and community partners at a special ceremony yesterday.
The charity presented awards for the most spirited voyages, students and educator, most improved students, most valuable and most improved skillers, most spirited community partners and most valuable volunteer.
The awards night was also a celebration of the charity's tenth anniversary and the 20th anniversary “of the idea being spawned”, Jay Kempe, who founded the charity with Malcolm Kirkland and Alan Burland in 1996, said.
“Twenty years ago Malcolm had this idea and he asked Alan and I to meet with him.
“It took ten years from the spawning of the idea to the launch and now ten years of the programme.
“We've worked hard and gone through a number of different years.
“We've learnt from mistakes. I think we've grown and our programmes are more sophisticated.”
The Bermuda Sloop Foundation runs two youth programmes on board the Spirit of Bermuda, the Core Middle School Voyage Programme which sees all middle school students go on a five-day voyage during the academic year, and a summer programme for those over the age of 16.
The programmes provide character and educational development for children and other Bermuda youth using the unique attributes of structured experiential learning through sail training on board the Spirit of Bermuda.
Guest speaker Laurence Steinberg, an internationally recognised expert on psychological development during adolescence, praised the Foundation's work as he spoke about the importance of embracing adolescence as a time of opportunity rather than seeing it as a period to “survive”.
“I can sincerely say that when I've been travelling around to places in the States talking about these ideas, many times I am asked ‘can you point us to a school or an organisation that is behaving in a way that is consistent with this new vision of adolescence' and now I can certainly point to the Bermuda Sloop Foundation because what you all are doing is consistent with what we know about teenagers and how they develop,” Dr Steinberg said.
The award for most spirited voyage for M2 went to T.N. Tatem Middle School, which saw 18 girls take part in January, while Warwick Academy received the most spirited voyage school award for M3 for their March trip.
Vernita Hollis, of Dellwood Middle School, was named the most spirited educator and the awards for most spirited students went to Andreaz Glasgow, of Sandys Secondary Middle School, and Sanzia Pearman, of Warwick Academy.
Meanwhile, T.N. Tatem Middle School student Sydney Tavares and Dellwood Middle School student Zayne Sinclair were named as the most improved students and Diamond Dill, who now attends the Berkeley Institute, was awarded the most valuable skiller award, and Daque Davis, of Dellwood Middle School, was given the most improved skiller award.
The prize for most spirited community partners went to J.P. Skinner and his team from the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences and Tom Herbert Evans from the America's Cup Community Sailing Project. The award for most valuable volunteer went to Aran McKittrick, who has been involved with the Spirit of Bermuda since its vision was conceived.