A charity that changes lives through sailing

Last week the Making Waves rally kicked off in Sydney Harbour, to raise money for not for profit charity, Sailors with disABILITIES.

The annual event is in its second year, and sees sailors gather for fun, competitive sailing, followed by celebrations at the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia (CYCA).

Who is SWD?

Sailors with disABILITIES (SWD) started in 1994. According to their website, their vision is to build optimism among disabled and disadvantaged people through the medium of sailing.

They achieve this by acting as a catalyst for change, and by offering opportunities to individuals with disabilities, and people who are disadvantaged.

SWD’s values include:

  • Making a difference – by helping to improve the lives of individuals with disabilities, and those who are disadvantaged.
  • Safety – ensuring safety is at the core of their events, and everything else they do.
  • Quality – striving to deliver high standards of performance in their work.
  • Integrity – maintaining an unwavering and absolute commitment to operating in an ethical, respectful, trustworthy and responsible manner.
  • Collaboration – adopting a collaborative approach, with a value on input from program participants, volunteers, donors, partners and the community.
  • Innovation – seeking, developing and implementing new ways of funding and undertaking the services they offer.

How they help sailors with disabilities

  • SWD offers amazing youth programs, for kids with disabilities, as well as special days for carers, and other wonderful programs for adults and young people with disabilities.
  • In 1994, SWD was the first yacht to be completely crewed by sailors with disabilities in the Sydney to Southport Yacht Race.
  • Since then, SWD has participated in 20 Sydney to Hobart races.
  • In 2003, they achieved (and retain) the world record for the fastest unassisted circumnavigation around Australia (non-stop).
  • Over 47,000 people with disabilities and disadvantaged individuals have gone sailing with SWD since it began.
  • Every year, over 2,500 people continue to benefit from SWD.
  • In 2015, SWD set the world record for the fastest route from Sydney to Lord Howe to Balls Pyramid, and back to Sydney.

How you can help

If you’d like to help SWD perform the life changing work they undertake, consider donating to the charity, or offering some of your time.

Either way, you will make a big difference to the lives of kids and adults in Australia.

Head here to donate or find out more!

Sailor with disabilities