The Prince's Trust and Ocean Youth Trust welcomed Aileen Campbell MSP aboard

Scotland’s Minister for
Children and Young People boarded a volunteer training
yacht to find
out how two charities are using sail training to change young lives.

Aileen Campbell MSP joined
young people who have completed voyages on the Mersey Bay pilot schooner Spirit, through sail training programmes run by The
Prince’s Trust and Ocean Youth Trust Scotland.

They were joined by young people
supported by other Prince’s Trust programmes, to hear their experiences of
overcoming challenges and moving into jobs and education.

A two year Strategic Funding
Partnership with the Scottish Government is contributing £250,000 in funding for Spirit and other Prince’s Trust programmes to support young
people into learning and employment.

This year Spirit will make around 30 voyages this year, giving more than 250 young people the chance to learn new skills and grow in confidence.

The Minister boarded the schooner at the Yorkhill Pontoon on the Clyde for a tour
followed by a roundtable discussion with the young people.

Aileen Campbell, Minister
for Children and Young People, said: ‘For many, youth work is
about having a fun time with friends, but for a significant number of our most
vulnerable young people it is the only space where they feel free to build
lasting and supportive relationships, learn skills and develop confidence that
they will rely on as they move from education to work or start families of
their own.

‘I am sure that for all of Spirit’s crew, past and present, sailing on such an
impressive ship is an experience that will inspire them for years to come.”

Allan Watt, director of The
Prince’s Trust Scotland, added: ‘We were delighted to welcome the Minister onto
Spirit at the start of the sailing
season, to hear young people’s experiences of our sail training voyages and
other programmes.’