Quay Crew funds training courses for young people from lower income backgrounds


Quay Crew has partnered with Greig City Academy (GCA), Scaramouche Sailing Trust and crew training school Flying Fish to provide employment opportunities to young people from diverse ethnic and lower income backgrounds.

The crew recruitment agency will entirely fund the STCW, PBL2 courses and the ENG1 medical for eligible candidates, in a bid to “remove the financial barriers” in getting the entry-level superyacht crew qualifications. Tim Clarke, director, Quay Crew (pictured left) will also provide candidates with interview coaching and mentoring.

Founded in 2014, GCA’s sailing programme creates opportunities for young people from London to learn more about yachting and build skills needed for a life at sea. It claims over 1,000 students from ethnic minority groups and disadvantaged backgrounds have been through the programme.

As the sailing programme currently costs around £200,000 ($240,000) a year to run, GCA set up a charity, the Scaramouche Sailing Trust, to raise funds. Clarke reached out to Jon Holt (pictured right), founder of the programme and head of Sixth Form at GCA after hearing about the trust on TV.

“Hearing Jon’s story and how he made significant personal and financial sacrifices to get the programme off the ground was inspirational,” said Clarke. “Listening to the young lads too made me want to help those who wanted to access the opportunities that working onboard superyachts has to offer.”

Clarke said that those who complete the programme prove that they are “motivated, committed and capable – all excellent traits of solid superyacht crew”. But due to due to their backgrounds and financial situation, it was “impossible” for them to break into the superyacht industry,

We thought we could help change that,” he said. “We all know that there’s a severe lack of diversity in the superyacht sector and this is now being noticed by many owners and management companies who are keen to bring crew from a wide range of backgrounds onboard.”

Holt highlighted that the partnership is educating students about career options available to them that they may have never heard of otherwise and giving them access to vital training and qualifications.

Whilst we are great at helping students thrive and excel at sailing, we also want to also be able to offer tangible opportunities in the wider sector and many of our students would be well suited to the superyacht sector,” he said.

The partnership has already resulted in the placement of a candidate (pictured centre) in a deckhand position onboard a 60m (196ft) yacht.

Quay Crew has funded the course and medicals at Flying Fish training school on the Isle of Wight, UK. Flying Fish has also provided accommodation for the course free of charge.

Andy Hunt, MD, Flying Fish said: “It’s always great to see aspiring yachties take the first step into their yachting career, but this is extra special because many of the young people will never have thought it possible.”