Jordan's sailing adventure

ADVENTURE: Cowell Area School Year 10 student Jordan Lewis with the One and All.
ADVENTURE: Cowell Area School Year 10 student Jordan Lewis with the One and All.

I was fortunate to be selected to be a part of the STV One and All Training Vessel Youth Voyage.

The voyage runs over five days in which 18 trainees learn about how to sail a ship and develop skills in team building and personal development.

I was lucky enough to be sponsored by the Wooden Boat Association which I am very grateful for.

The fact that a bunch of teenagers were up before dawn ready to sail and take on the day's new challenges said something about how much we enjoyed the trip.

It is an intensive work and social experience, where trainees are presented with challenges of acquiring skills to safely operate a tall ship at sea.

Meeting the challenge conveys a sense of achievement and self worth.

Before the journey began, we were sorted into three watches, Port Watch, Middle Watch and (the best watch), Starboard.

Every night we were rotated through three watches that went from 8pm to midnight, midnight to 4am and 4am to 8am to keep the ship running 24 hours a day.

Cleaning duties took 45 minutes out of our day just before morning tea.

Areas included the main accommodation; beds, bathrooms and toilets, the galley (chef's kitchen) and saloon (where we ate).

The last one was the deck, where you would scrub the deck, brasso the brass dolphins, bells and clean the windows.

That little time out of your day kept the ship tidy and in good shape to keep sailing.

The STV One and All vessel was commissioned on April 5 1987 and approximately 10,000 students have experiences the youth development program.

The One and All was built to join the re-enactments of the first fleet being the youngest vessel in the group.

We travelled from the Port Adelaide docks to the bottom of the Yorke Peninsula near Marion Bay.

Some of the highlights of the trip were the friendships, bonding over seasickness, using a boat rope to swing and jump into 100 metre deep water, learning to tie knots and the food.

Climbing up the mast within the first hours being on board was a huge highlight.

We had harnesses on, but it was still scary!

I don't regret it one bit, it's not every day you get to climb thirty metres on a boat.

Another highlight was when on the last day of the trip, the trainees ran the ship, set the sails, called the orders and did the navigation.

The skills we learnt helped us get back to the dock safely.

Overall it was the best experience I've ever had and, if I could, I would do it all over again.

So, I highly recommend it to students who want to learn about sailing, or even something about themselves.