- Horizons (Plymouth)
- DCRS Plymouth
- Open Doors International Language School
As a collective we would appreciate advice and ideas from other POP members who have experience with similar activities or project delivery around tracking and demonstrating impact. This is a project that will deliver a range of valuable, but hard to quantify, soft-outcomes over different time-frames.
At the beginning of the project we would try to get a “baseline” picture (in the participants own words), around their feelings, expectations, and what they hope to achieve through the programme. We would then revisit these discussion points during the programme and on completion to reflect back on the participants journey. This would provide us with evidence of soft outcomes such as gained confidence, new skills, friendships formed, achievements etc over the duration of the programme. We would be really interested in hearing about other organizations experiences using story based impact demonstration, or other methods of assessment that may be relevant.
We will seek to learn from other POP members should issues of distress or distrust arise, We believe that a collaborative system of engagement and learning; seeking POP members for advice when issues arise is the best course of action.
We would engage with POP members who are involved in the Refugee community and seek to promote the course as a pathway to greater confidence on the water. We recognize we need to be intentional in ensuring all nationalities are communicated with and through our partnership with POP will endeavor to create a clear line of referral for any who wish to participate.
We shall also seek to ensure the work is made known through social media to ensure that others are encouraged to also join the experience in the future, giving the work longevity and creating a culture where the water is a place for all the nations
Horizons are a small, local charity dedicated to removing barriers to sailing and motorboating. Each year approx. 1,100 disadvantaged and disabled local young people participate in our inclusive and accessible sailing and motorboating projects. With only 3 paid staff we rely heavily on the support of our adult volunteers to deliver our projects. Since Covid-19, Horizons has faced a shortage of adult volunteers which has sometimes caused us to restrict the number of young people sailing.
The participants in this project will be trained and invited to join the Horizons volunteer team, this will promote inclusion, diversify our volunteer team, and enable Horizons to connect with a community who do not currently access our activities. It will also provide our young sailors with a range of positive role models from different backgrounds, encouraging acceptance and inclusion.
Horizons are a Royal Yachting Association accredited training center delivering sessions that are enjoyable, and empowering. Horizons will be responsible for all sailing and water based aspects of the project. ODILS and DCRS are well placed to identify suitable project participants. They also have the ability to encourage the local refugee community in Plymouth to engage with this project and will provide participants with pastoral care, and language and learning support to maximise the chances of success, ensuring that this project delivers a positive experience.
On completion, we hope project participants will choose to continue with Horizons as adult volunteers. Horizons would then be able to offer fully subsidized, ongoing training opportunities for individual learning and development.
Plymouth prides itself on being the UK’s “Ocean City”, however our beautiful coastline and marine environment can also be a site of exclusion. It is well documented that a fear of the water and an underrepresentation of the BAME community on the sea is observed across the Western world. Professor Dean Hardy affirms that there are “regional histories of racism and perceptions of places as coded by race/ethnicity in ways that discourage beach use” This, hand in hand with a widespread inability to swim can mean that for certain communities, especially refugee communities, water is a site of exclusion and fear.
This project will recognize that Plymouth’s natural assets should be for all residents. Our cohort will be refugees who will be supported to succeed, overcome challenges, and pursue volunteer opportunities. This project will promote and give substance to the fact that Plymouth’s marine environment can provide opportunities for inclusion and community cohesion, rather than exclusion.
The project participants will have the opportunity to experience sailing, gaining new skills, and qualifications, whilst improving their English language skills, and being invited into our Horizons community. The training will emphasize team work and peer leadership to encourage a sense of confidence and collaboration. We believe this project will empower the participants, boosting their wellbeing, and delivering long term improved employment prospects, and community cohesion.
Dean Hardy R., Milligan R. A., Heynen N. (2017). Racial coastal formation: The environmental injustice of colorblind adaptation planning for sea-level rise. Geoforum, 87, 62–72.
Horizons are a local charity providing inclusive sailing opportunities for young people from the most disadvantaged neighbourhoods in Plymouth aged 8-19 and young people with disabilities aged up to 25.
Devon and Cornwall Refugee Support (DCRS) provides advocacy, advice, support, education, and a welcoming community space for asylum seekers living in Plymouth. DCRS has over 20 years of experience in supporting asylum seekers to access legal representation, financial support and appropriate housing. In addition DCRS run a varied activities programme including language support, and social groups.
For over 20 years ODILS Learning Foundation has been central to serving the Plymouth Asylum Seeker and Refugee communities, and all those of ethnicity who have an English language need. The charity has now grown to include TESOL Teacher Training, on-line learning and collaborations with local universities and the Plymouth business community for Refugee employment mentoring and support.
In 2022, following conversations between volunteers and trustees Horizons provided some informal sailing taster sessions for DCRS staff and service users. The DCRS service users then expressed a keen interest in learning to sail and we have worked together to develop a way to provide that opportunity.
Horizons will accommodate all sailing provision and provide essential equipment (buoyancy aids, waterproofs etc). DCRS and ODILs will identify individuals within the asylum seeker and refugee communities whose English proficiency is at the necessary level to participate.
The participants will receive ongoing pastoral care and support from DCRS to facilitate maximum engagement and ongoing benefits and involvement with Horizons beyond this programme. ODILs will provide English language and learning support to maximise the participants benefit, and successful completion of the accredited training and certification assessments. We hope to use this as a pilot project, and if successful we will seek further (multi-year) funding to continue