News Sail Africa Youth Development Foundation Wins the World Sailing 11th Hour Racing Sustainability Award

Sail Africa Youth Development Foundation Wins the World Sailing 11th Hour Racing Sustainability Award

Congratulations to the Sail Africa Youth Development Foundation on winning the World Sailing 11th Hour Sailing Sustainability Award.   

In 2008, sailing in Durban was dominated by elite white males. The Sail Africa Youth Development Foundation set out to change this by growing the number of sailors from across South Africa’s diverse ethnic groups – this has been successful with several sailors having been youth captains at yacht clubs, sailed the two-handed Nastro Rosa Tour, been sailor of the year at different clubs and have received Provincial sailing colours. This earned the Sail Africa Youth Development Foundation the National Award “for changing the lives of fellow South Africans through sport” in 2016.

The Foundation has also focused on growing the number of girls from diverse groups through its school and University programs to empower and increase the number of girls racing and their local podium places. The Foundation coupled this with a life skills program to ensure positive sustainable outcomes.

This program was profiled as a #SteeringTheCourse case study (2021). And supported the South African Government’s Blue Economy thrust, through quality maritime education programs linked to sailing. This has earned the Foundation the Ethekwini Maritime Cluster Award for Empowering Youth in 2017.

The programs enhance sailing sustainability by raising awareness in non-sailors, including government, of the impact of sailing, bringing people into sailing that would never have had the opportunity and reducing inequality and ensuring social sustainability, while investing in human capital by developing education, reducing poverty and creating environmental awareness.

IODA was honoured to have been one of four finalists in this award.  We want to acknowledge and congratulate the other finalists in this very important award.  Everyone is deserving of this recognition.

We thank 11th Hour Racing for leading the way in all that they do to bring awareness about sustainability to our sailing world.

Our mission in IODA is to continue to ensure that through implementing sustainable strategies and programs that the Optimist Class will be here for many generations to come.

From the Executive Committee to the Technical and Regatta Committees, we are focused on making sustainability and social responsibility a priority in every thing that we do and every decision that we make. 

Thank you to all our members, sailors, and individuals who voted and supported us in this award.