Great Southern Grammar Students Sailing Home

In March 2020, Year Ten students from Great Southern Grammar, Albany, have the unique experience of sailing into their home port on board a traditional tall ship – STS Leeuwin II.

The 41 students will sail on a Youth Explorer Voyage, departing from Fremantle on 6 March. Working together to learn the intricacies of tall ship sailing, the students will sail down the Western Australian coast, docking in Albany on 12 March.

The voyage is run by Leeuwin Ocean Adventure’s experienced crew and volunteers and is designed to develop participant’s resilience, teamwork, problem-solving and leadership skills in a unique and challenging environment.

Everyone on board is expected to actively participate in sailing the ship, which includes climbing the rigging, setting and furling the sails, taking the helm and standing watch during the night.

In 2019, the Leeuwin returned to Albany for the first time in 10 years and was warmly welcomed by the local community.

“It’s a pleasure to return to the Southern region and welcome Great Southern Grammar back on board,” said Leeuwin Ocean Adventure CEO, Carol Shannon.

“This year’s voyage is another step toward strengthening the relationship between Great Southern Grammar and Leeuwin. The school has previously chartered the ship for sails and our crew have been very impressed with the attitude and output of their students. As a cohort, they’re willing to get hands-on and give everything a go, which is great to see.”

Mr Mark Bonnin, Head of Senior School at Great Southern Grammar, said the Year Ten students are excited about the unique sailing opportunity.

“This will be an unbelievable experience for our students – sailing from Perth to Albany will be a memory they will cherish for the rest of their lives.”

“This is the third year we’ve had students on the Leeuwin, but it’s the first time they will sail on a voyage into their home port. The Leeuwin sail was extremely successful last year, and many students have returned to Leeuwin since to volunteer or complete another voyage.”

“On the voyage, the students learn resilience – they are responsible for sailing the ship from point A to point B. They develop their teamwork skills by working together in their watch groups and they bond and form new friendships throughout the experience,” said Mr Bonnin.

“When our students step off the ship, they feel incredibly proud of what they’ve achieved and have a renewed sense of self-confidence. The training and skills they develop on STS Leeuwin II prepares them for the rest of their lives.”