Supporting disadvantaged young people
All young people supported by Trinity are at a critical stage in their personal development. We work with young people who are up to 25 years old, although most are between the ages of 14 and 18.
Our approach has been extensively used to help young people facing disadvantage in various forms; social, economic, physical and psychological and include those who experience multiple barriers in their lives.
We have a particular focus on those approaching the transition to adult life and judged to be at risk of failing to do so effectively.
Many are low educational achievers, and lack of self-esteem means they have no belief in their ability to change the course of their lives for the better. They lack confidence in their own ability, find it difficult to communicate and relate with others, and to maintain relationships.
Many are from areas of social and economic deprivation, both urban and rural. A proportion have emotional or behavioural problems, are resistant to authority or even advice, and are hard to reach and engage with.
The organisations from which they come include:
- schools and colleges
- social services
- youth welfare and support organisations
- special needs schools
- the probation service
- foster care organisations
- other charities
Some of the young people are from troubled family backgrounds, and that includes those who are or have been in care, are young carers or are victims of abuse. They may be young offenders or at risk of offending, or be in rehabilitation from alcohol or drug-related problems.
They may be blind or partially-sighted, deaf or with limited hearing, and these problems may be linked to other physical or learning difficulties. They include young people suffering from ADHD, autism and Asperger’s Syndrome.
If they fail to make a success of adult life, gain employment, or continue in further education or training, the problems that will be created are likely to be enduring.
A catalyst for change
Whatever their background and their needs, Trinity offers an experience in which young people can discover so much about themselves and what they are capable of achieving in a challenging environment through their own efforts.
What we do is much more about enabling self-discovery, changing attitudes and expectations and motivating young people than it is about learning to sail — though the satisfaction and sense of achievement that result from having helped sail a traditional vessel and experienced new environments are vital parts of the process.
Our residential courses are designed to address a wide range of needs and to benefit disadvantaged young people in a number of ways. Evidence from our courses shows the following outcomes for young people:
We help them aspire to realise their full potential
- Many who struggle in an academic environment discover previously unrecognised abilities
- They meet challenges and overcome fears, bringing a sense of achievement
- They begin to take steps to improve their future prospects
- They learn a range of hard and soft skills which are transferred back into their day to day environment
Delivering positive permanent outcomes
By taking young people out of their comfort zone and placing them in a totally unfamiliar environment, our staff and the youth leaders can work with the whole group starting on an equal footing.
The concentrated nature of the experience we provide, coupled with the unique environment, produce marked changes in outlook and behaviour in a very short time. The young people who return at the end of the voyage are very different in attitude from the ones who set out.
Our partners say that the sense of optimism and purpose that results from their time with Trinity is an important catalyst for change, and that what we do is the most effective way they know of engaging with, and motivating, often hard-to-reach young people.
We wish them to leave with a definite sense of having reached some personal goal, and encouraged to attempt things they would not previously have thought possible, and so take charge of their lives.
Trinity works exclusively in partnership with organisations concerned with the welfare of young people, and involves their staff in the process. We believe that sharing the experience with them enables relationships to be formed that can be the basis for ongoing change. Without that it might be more a one-off experience rather than the foundation for permanent benefits.
Putting young people first
Working with our partners we use robust procedures to evaluate the effectiveness of our work and ensure the outcomes reflect priorities in key government policies and frameworks. Our qualified crew have a wealth of experience in making our sail training programmes a safe, nurturing and enjoyable environment, and with a high ratio of crew to young people Trinity is able to provide the support and encouragement that is central to the success of the experience.
We aim to be innovative and focused in our work with young people and we regularly review our processes and developmental outcomes to ensure we put the needs of young people first.