“I felt a sense of belonging and freedom being on board. There is great camaraderie amongst all the crew.”
Paige Murray, age 26 from Leicester, first sailed with us on her eighteenth birthday. She has cerebral palsy and says JST voyages have provided greater purpose and positivity in her life.
I first sailed with the Jubilee Sailing Trust eight years ago, on board Tenacious. The opportunity came up by chance – I was invited to sail with a group of friends from my local inclusive sports and participation initiative. I had no expectations and was so excited to try something new.
I loved sailing from day one, and wanted to get back on board almost immediately. I felt a sense of belonging and freedom being on board. There is great camaraderie amongst all the crew, most of whom I hadn’t met until the trip.
It’s pretty cool sleeping on a ship with nothing but essentials, great company and open air when on deck. Not forgetting the repetitive and assertive sounds of the words “Two, six heave! Two, six, heave…” – it is just such fun!
Life on board is a world away from the day to day. It’s all too easy to be consumed by expectations within society and certainly as a teenager I needed these trips to move myself forward, gain confidence, develop my self-esteem and broaden my socialising abilities.
My more recent trip in my mid-twenties was long awaited with a new purpose. This time it was about recharging.
In the six years since sailing with the JST, I have been occupied with my athletics adventure, competing in the sport of Wheelchair Racing at international level. My sport is very much a priority, so I use my travels to improve myself inwardly. It was training of the psychological kind that’s for sure.
An absolute favourite pastime of mine when on board is being out on the netting and climbing aloft.
What would Paige say to someone considering going on board a JST voyage?
I would urge anyone to go sailing – I wouldn’t be without it now.
Sailing with the JST is an incredible adventure. The experience has added more to my life, providing greater purpose and positivity. What’s more it’s a unique and fabulous way to travel.