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Community

Being built, launched and working most of her long career in Shetland, Swan has always had a strong link with the community. Both during her return/restoration, and now with her ongoing operation, the community of Shetland has supported The Swan Trust and its objectives and we look to give back to the community wherever we can.

First and foremost, Swan is a community asset which brings people together, whether on a sailing trip, as part of our volunteer base or through community events. With a particular focus on enabling youth sail training opportunities, we connect with schools, sail training and youth organisations, and undertake a range of youth sails every year. We believe our youth are our future and always enjoy seeing them learn new skills, challenge themselves and grow in confidence on our trips.

We value and help to develop the skills of our volunteer base, looking to help them as they help us, and work with partner organisations to enhance community events and funding bids for youth, community and other projects. We also develop/strengthen links between Shetland and other coastal communities, building Shetland's brand.

The sail training and volunteering experiences we offer are about much more than sailing/maintaining the boat, they promote mental and physical health, build life experiences, confidence, skills and friendships.

We are incredibly proud to work with the community of Shetland, and the work we do to both keep our heritage alive and offer life changing experiences for our current and future generations.

Examples of communtiy work and links with local events:

2020

  • We will work with Zetland Educational Trust and local schools to deliver half and full day sails to local school pupils.
  • We are working with Sail Training Sheltand to place 10 trainees onboard for an Adventure Sail North, Ullapool to Shetland, and working with them and The Shetland Amenity Trust to expand Shetland Boat Week 2020
  • We are working with the planning committee to make Swan part of the planned Festival of the Sea in Scalloway, August 2020
  • We are partnering with Laurie Goodland, of Shetland with Laurie, to offer new guided Lerwick Harbour Tours aboard Swan and with local musician Barry Nisbet to offer his Sessions & Sail experience in the isles for the first time
  • Swan will part of the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival and Anstruther Harbour Festival.
  • We have also partnered with other organisations to offer trips which promote particular aspects of our heritage, including: A Herring Trail, Shetland to Anstruther, where partner organisations include: Stronsay Ranger Service, Wick Heritage Museum and Scottish Fisheries Museum; and a Shetland Bus inspired trip to Norway, which we are currently working on with the Shetland Bus Friendship Society.

2019

  • We worked with Shetland's Youth Ambassadors, Shetland Islands Council, Shetland Schools and Environmental Artist Julia Barton, to bring an innovative environmental art project to the isles, which has long lasting legacy through the Shetland's Youth Ambassodrs being trained to deliver environmental workshops on an ongoing basis.
  • Even though Swan was on a charter outwith the isles, The Swan Trust took part in Sheltand Boat Week by opening its Sail Loft to the public for the first time.
  • We worked with Sail Training Sheltand to place 10 trainees onboard for race one of the Tall Ships Races, from Aalborg in Denmark to Fredrikstad in Norway.
  • We opened Swan for an infromal music session during the Shetland Folk Festival.
  • We worked with Shetland Amenity Trust, Shetland Tall Ships Company and Sail Training Shetland to submit a successful funding application to Event Scotland Year of Coasts and Waters to expand Shetland Boat Week 2020.
  • We worked with Zetland Educational Trust and local schools to deliver half and full day sails to local school pupils.
  • We helped strengthen Shetland's links with Faroe through both greeting a Faroeese Flotilla to Shetland and Visiting Faroe on a 'Cod Hunters' Trail.
  • We presented the Vevoe Trophy to our Sail Trainee of the Year 2019 at our annual end of season gathering.

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Volunteer

Want to get involved in sail training boat trips in Shetland? There are a number of different ways you can volunteer.

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Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, resultant government restrictions and event cancellations, the Swan Trust has cancelled all 2020 sailing trips. It is hoped many 2020 trips will be rescheduled to next year, which will be advertised on their website as they are confirmed. To protect its volunteers, the Trust also cancelled maintenance sessions and regular meetings for the time being, but hope to resume these as soon as restrictions allow.

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The Swan Trust and Shetland with Laurie are working together for the first time to offer guided tours of Lerwick Harbour aboard Shetlands traditional boat, The Swan. See Jimmy Perez’s house from the sea and hear tales of smugglers, Dutch fishermen and the rise of Lerwick to Shetlands capital.

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