Volunteers are essential to making the sport accessible to people of all-abilities. There are many different ways you can become involved, including roles that don’t require any prior sailing experience. All clubs with Sailability programs welcome new volunteers and many offer training to help assist them in their roles.
Type of training for volunteers may include:
- Safety boat handling
- Opening Doors and Inclusive Coaching (disability awareness programs)
- First Aid
- Instructor or Assistant Instructor
- Club Coach
Some of the volunteer opportunities with Sailability include: fundraising, media and public relations, dock hands, general administration, transportation, social activities organiser, volunteer recruitment, training and development, sailing instructors, safety boat drivers, catering, boat maintenance, crew, and event support. People of all abilities are encouraged to become volunteers.
Jackie first became involved with Sailability through her role as a recreation officer working with people of all-abilities. After seeing a presentation on how sailing was accessible, Jackie arranged a day of sailing for the people she worked with and has been actively involved with Sailability ever since. Through Sailability, Jackie has had the opportunity to make a real and positive difference to people of all-abilities, their families and friends. Since her initial hands-on volunteering roles at a local club, Jackie is now part of the Sailability Australia Committee that provides leadership for the Sailability programs across the country.
Allister’s involvement in sailing has seen him progress his skill and participate in many international events, including representing Australia at the Special Olympics and achieving at the highest level. To share his love of the sport and gives others the opportunity to learn to sail, Allister has become a Yachting Australia qualified Assistant Instructor.
Martin Waller – Sailability VIC
Martin Waller has been participating in sailing through Sailability for 10 years. At the age of 17, he was the victim of an unprovoked criminal assault that saw him spend six months in a coma and suffer a serious permanent brain injury. His progress in sailing is remarkable. Using a cervo-assist, Martin is able to steer the boat using his chin. With the support of his parents and many Sailability volunteers, Martin has progressed his skills to a level where he has had the opportunity to compete overseas.
Ame began sailing at age seven and has risen through The Sailing Pathway to become a Paralympic hopeful. Ame has no arms or hands and only the lower part of her left leg. She uses her toes to sail. Her passion for sailing has enabled her to travel all over the world to compete in regattas.