THE PROGRAM BACKGROUND
In June 2017 Sir James Hardy launched a book at the Adelaide Naval and Military Club. Over 100 attended; many were yachtsmen and Rotarians. The book written by the author Trevor Gill was about the life of Jim’s friend visionary South Australian boat builder David Binks. It was entitled “Casting Off Tradition”.
A short time before the launch Trevor and then the publishers Wakefield Press offered to give David a proportion of the sale price of books sold to go to a charity of his choice.
David having spent a lifetime designing, building and sailing yachts felt it was appropriate to choose something related to the sea. At the time of the book launch David had been a Rotarian for 52 years. Much of his Rotary activity had centred on programs designed to assist young people.
David also knew that his friend Jim Hardy had been very involved in promoting the building of South Australia’s square-rigged training ship One & All. Trevor the author was also very passionate about the ship and had chaired the One & All board for a number of years.
David had seen first-hand the benefits sailing gives to young people and therefore it was logical he chose for the money from his book to go towards a Rotary program he would set up to send students on 5 day training voyages on the One & All.
The program was established shortly after the book launch. A decision was made to approach clubs in both David’s Rotary District 0520 and the adjoining District 9500 to source and assist in sponsoring students.
The program caught the imagination of Rotarians and other donors. The Boating Industry Foundation contributed $5,000. The Rotary Foundation District Grant’s committee also contributed and SeaLink became our first commercial sponsor. The majority of funds however came from individual Rotary clubs who enthusiastically embraced the concept.
By October 2018 some $36,000 had been raised sufficient to send 30 students on two Rotary development voyages -.one in January and the other in October 2018. The second voyage had 18 students on board, a full trainee complement.
By November 2018 the program had generated a great deal of interest. This website was set up and a student Facebook page, run by some of our past One & All sailors, will be produced in 2019. The future of the program looks very rosy and it seems certain the number of sponsored students will continue to expand.