Celebrating International Never Give Up Day

It’s always wonderful to hear when someone has sailed with Cirdan and the impact it has had on their lives. In celebration of Never Give Up Day, we would like to share Clare’s story and how her sailing voyage with Cirdan when she was 16 years old would change her path in life.

“Over 20 years ago in 2001, age 16, I was selected to partake in a school trip aboard the Queen Galadriel. Where I was from, no one ever did this kind of stuff! I had no idea it would impact me the way it did,” says Clare.  

“On that weekend I fell in love with sailing and the ocean, and I promised myself that one day, I would own my own ship.

“As soon as I got home, I didn’t hesitate to put myself forward as a volunteer. A few years later I was reunited with the Queen as a fourth-hand volunteer.”

Twenty years later, Queen Galadriel is still very close to her heart. “Although I’m far from owning my own sailing ship, I always ensure my home has at least one ornamental one within its walls! I’m never shy to tell the story of how I developed my love for sailing and my discovery of the therapeutic nature of water.

“The freedom upon the vessel, to be vulnerable, having to trust, to bond with peers, to talk about life, worries, hopes and dreams together, without judgement, is what I believe caused the nostalgia that manifests whenever I’m near a stream, a lake, a beach, a boat! I just feel…safe!”

Clare is now a 37-year-old mother of three young boys. She recently realigned her life, closed her business, remarried and started a degree in psychology. She has also offered her services to our charity as a volunteer.

“I remember as a fourth hand, talking with some of the youths late into the night about life, challenging their pessimism with optimism and affirmations, sometimes just listening, being a pair of ears to hear whatever they aired without judgement,” reminisces Clare. “I remember how some of us worked together when we nearly lost the boat off the back after we took a beating from the waves. Whilst the rest slept we discussed the fragility and value of life. I was young, but I felt like me being there counted for something.”

Clare is proof that you should never give up, and it’s never too late to change your path in life.