Sailing charity buoyed by donation

AN innovative charity which provides sailing opportunities for physically and mentally disabled people has been buoyed today after receiving a hefty donation for a new vessel.

AN innovative charity which provides sailing opportunities for physically and mentally disabled people has been buoyed today after receiving a hefty donation for a new vessel.

The Woolverstone Project was given �4,200 for a new access dinghy thanks to the generosity of four Ipswich Rotary clubs - Wolsey, Ipswich, East and Orwell.

The new boat, named by the four club presidents as Gyppeswyk, joins the project's growing fleet of dinghies used for introducing disabled people to sailing.

Johnty Dickinson MBE, Woolverstone Project trustee and director, told the 130 Rotarians and Woolverstone Project volunteers who gathered at the charity's Alton Water base that the donation was vital.


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He said: “We cannot thank you enough for this generous donation of a new boat.

“We are getting more and more calls for our services and this new boat is a welcome addition to our fleet.”

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The Woolverstone Project was launched 15 years ago with a mandate of getting people of all ages and disabilities afloat.

Mr Dickinson said: “Sailing is a wonderful therapy for many of these people.

“Over the years Rotary has been a good friend, with many members coming to help with such things as getting people in and out of boats, getting the boats rigged and out on the water and back again and into the storage compound.

“Without their help we couldn't get the 800 bottoms on seats that we achieve each year.”

Among the project's regular helpers are youngsters from the nearby Royal Hospital School (RHS).

Children from the school gave a demonstration of sailing the Project's training dinghies.

Earlier this year, students staged a school concert and raised more then �1,400 for the project.

RHS scholar and first year sailor James Bullen, 13, presented a cheque for the balance to Woolverstone Project young sailor Stephen Emery from Felixstowe.

Have you benefitted from the work of the Woolverstone Project? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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