2019 Youth Leadership Challenge

Twenty lucky young Tasmanian's with be setting sail in December 2019 for the voyage of a lifetime… will you be one of them?

About the 2019 Youth Leadership Challenge

Voyage dates: 11th-20th December 2019
Applications are now closed. Thank you for your interest!

Download the Youth Leadership Challenge brochure

The Windeward Bound Trust’s Annual Youth Leadership Challenge is a working partnership with Rotary Tasmania that also receives support from the Migrant Resource Centre of Southern Tasmania. This program promotes understanding, inclusiveness, and community by bringing together 20 young people of vastly different backgrounds for a ten-day voyage aboard the STV Windeward Bound, and giving them the opportunity to connect and grow with one another in both the short and long term.

The Youth Leadership Challenge is open to youths between the ages of 15 - 18 living in Tasmania -- ten locals with an interest in mentoring and creating a more inclusive Tasmanian community, and ten from refugee backgrounds who recently settled in Tasmania. This program is fortunate to receive generous financial support from a number of sponsors, which allows us to significantly reduce the cost for all participants. Those who wish to participate as mentors are required to fundraise $2,000 in donations to further offset these costs, and youth from refugee backgrounds are eligible for a significant subsidy to cover the majority of their voyage fee, with additional financial assistance available if needed. The Windeward Bound Trust provides some guidance to mentors in their fundraising (including a fundraising kit with tips and hints), and assists in matching mentors with Rotary clubs sponsors. Nearly half of all Tasmanian Rotary clubs have sponsored mentors in past years, and most mentors from previous voyages have received some amount of Rotary sponsorship.

“ There were hundreds of hilarious moments and never a moment that I and all of my fellow crew members didn’t have a big smile on our faces. The voyage was full of learning opportunities, ranging from general shipboard knowledge to communication and leadership skills along with developing an understanding of diversity and different cultures.”- Holly Bowd, 2016 Mentor

“They really have a self belief now that they an do something and they are proud, as they should be, of stepping out of their comfort zones and communities to do this.”- Sharon Wright, MRC North's Youth Settlement Pathways Co-ordinator

Rotary tasmania relationship

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The Windeward Bound Trust has enjoyed a significant relationship with Rotary in Tasmania since 1994, and the Rotary Club of Hobart has been a driving force in the development and success of the Youth Leadership Challenge since its inception in 2012. In previous years, a four-member coordinating team from the Rotary Club of Hobart has assisted the Windeward Bound Trust with the planning for the voyage, the promotion to Rotary Clubs across the state, and the selection of mentors.  This year, having become an official program of Rotary Tasmania, this team will have additional Rotarian members from around the District.

Sail Training International, which the Windeward Bound is a member of and Rotary International share the common aims of encouraging youth development which supporting efforts towards international friendship and understanding. STAR is Sail Training and Rotary and is the title of the Sail Training International initiative to enhance collaborations ranging from Rotary Club sponsorship of trainees sailing on tall ships, to projects undertaken jointly by Rotary clubs ans host ports. 

Rotary Clubs throughout the District actively support the program through assisting with the recruitment and selection of mentors, and from time to time with sponsorship. Involvement with the Youth Leadership Challenge not only promotes ongoing outreach by clubs into their communities, but also provides the opportunity for them to hear inspiring speakers in the form of sponsored mentors, post-voyage. Over the past six years, 48% of Tasmanian Rotary Clubs have been sponsors, ten of those clubs having been sponsors in multiple years. We have received feedback from several clubs that their mentor speakers were some of the more memorable they’ve had, and we have already had unprompted enquiries for the upcoming voyage from clubs interested in sponsoring young Tasmanians.