June 28th, 2019
Dear Friends and Supporters,
Over the past 40 years, the JST has delivered nearly 50,000 transformative adventures. Throughout this time, our work has made a profound difference to the lives of people of all abilities, ages, backgrounds and circumstances. We have had a global reach and sailed our important mission to every continent on the planet.
In recent years, we have been working hard to ensure this legacy can be enjoyed by many generations to come by making important changes to how we deliver our mission – for example, by widening the groups of beneficiaries we serve and putting charitable partnerships at the centre of everything we do.
These efforts have been designed to increase our impact and also our financial sustainability. Whilst they have achieved the former, we have been struggling to stabilise our financial situation for the past 12 months, following a number of substantial mechanical issues across both ships, poor uptake of our winter 2018 programme, and the deferral of some partner projects from this summer to next year.
This has increased our short-term liabilities and we have not been able to raise the additional income, above that which we normally would expect, which is necessary to cover this shortfall.
At a meeting on Thursday June 27th 2019, the Trustees resolved that we should launch an emergency rescue fundraising effort to address our very serious financial challenges and to provide the working capital now needed to continue our activities. Our objective is to urgently raise £1m (one million pounds) of unrestricted funds by Friday July 5th 2019 to ensure that this can happen.
If we are unable to reach this target, then it is likely the JST’s activities will cease immediately, unless the Trustees can find another viable solution to our funding situation which allows us to continue operating responsibly.
This would, of course, be a very sad conclusion to four amazing decades of such important and ground-breaking work and it is particularly disappointing given the strength of our plans for later this year and beyond, which include a pioneering youth development project in August, the continuation of important partnerships which impact all our beneficiary groups, and a very exciting Mediterranean programme in the spring of 2020.
This decision has not been taken lightly and follows extensive consultation with restructuring professionals. It also considers the Trustees’ fiduciary responsibilities and the requirement for good governance of the charity, along with its duty to all stakeholders.
If you would like to help, please send your donation using the Appeal Gift Form or donate via JustGiving (donate here). Please make sure you include up-to-date contact information with your gift and also tick the Gift Aid box (if you can) to add an extra £25p for every £1 you donate.
All funds received will be placed in a ring-fenced account and will not be utilised until a final decision about the Trust’s viability is made by the Trustees at a meeting on Monday July 8th. All funds received by close of business on Friday July 5th will be considered in their decision making.
If, at that meeting, the Trustees decide insufficient monies have been raised to continue operations, then they will be promptly returned to those who have contributed.
We sincerely appreciate your consideration of our request and thank you, in advance, for any assistance you can provide at this critical time.
JST Trustee Board, June 28th 2019