YOUNG ENDEAVOUR: The vessel anchored off Muttonbird Island shortly before the crew disembarked for a stint on land.
YOUNG ENDEAVOUR: The vessel anchored off Muttonbird Island shortly before the crew disembarked for a stint on land. Bruce Thomas

Youth crew back on dry land

THE Young Endeavour crew gave a different meaning to the term “tree-hugger” when they arrived in Coffs Harbour today.

Captain David Jordan said after two days on the high seas, the first thing the youth troupe would do when disembarking was seize the opportunity to “hug a tree”.

Making the voyage from Newcastle to Brisbane, the group of 24 young Australians and nine specially-trained Royal Australian Navy crew anchored the vessel overnight to savour a precious stint on land before continuing their adventure north.

Given to the Australian Government and the Royal Australian Navy by the United Kingdom as a Bicentennial gift in 1988, the sail training ship embarks on 20 voyages annually, exploring the east and south coasts of Australia, as far north as Cairns and as far south as Hobart, with more than 11,000 youth completing the scheme over the years.

The crew of 16 to-23-year-olds are taught how to sail a square-rigged vessel, including how to keep watch, take the helm, cook in the galley, tie knots, work aloft and even take command. These skills are coupled with leadership and team building exercises.

Former Jetty High student Michael Rothery-Taylor works as a navy chef on board the Young Endeavour and while he was not on duty for this particular tour, he met the crew at the marina.

“Youth participants learn a range of relevant skills like navigation and living in communal harmony but also leadership and goal setting,” Mr Rothery-Taylor said.

“I enjoy seeing the participants’ progression from day one to the final day.

“It’s rewarding to see their growth and development.”

The Young Endeavour sets sail tomorrow morning.

For more information head to www.youngendeavour.gov.au



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