Maritime centre sets sail

Anne Wade christening the new yacht.

Maritime education at Simon’s Town School’s Lawhill Maritime Centre has been given a boost with the donation of a 26-foot yacht to be used for practical sail and navigation training.

The yacht is a donation from the international maritime mentoring programme, Marine Inspirations and yacht sponsor, the Caimari family in Spain.

The yacht was named “Homero”, in memory of the late Homero Caimari, and christened by Anne Wade at an event held at False Bay Yacht Club (FBYC) on Wednesday April 26.

Homero will in future be moored at FBYC, which has provided a berth at no charge, at the yacht club in Simon’s Town. Maintenance of the yacht will be undertaken by maritime students, under the watchful eye of yachting experts.

The yacht, which was purchased second-hand, was refurbished by Simon’s Town School’s maritime students, while the major refitting was arranged by well-known yachting expert, David Abromovitz.

The Marine Inspirations programme is the brainchild of two South African super yacht captains, Phil Wade and Anthony 
Three years ago Marine Inspirations partnered with Simon’s Town School’s Lawhill Maritime Centre and the SATS General Botha Old Boys’ Association to provide young South Africans with the opportunity to travel to the Spanish island of Mallorca to participate in a programme which offers young people from financially-challenged backgrounds an opportunity to learn about, and experience, the international super yacht industry.

For many programme participants, the Marine Inspirations experience is one of many “firsts” – from leaving the country and travelling abroad for the first time, to even their first visit to an airport, their first flights, and being the first members in their families to travel abroad.

During their time in Spain, they are also mentored by experts in the yachting industry. Whenever possible, they participate in super yacht regattas.

While the Marine Inspirations programme is focused on providing students with practical navigation and sail-training, it is a personally enriching, life-affirming experience which boosts students’ self-esteem and shows them that, no matter where they come from, they have the ability to achieve the life they want if they are prepared to work hard and make effort and sacrifices.

They are given a brief but important taste of a possible future career in yachting and the maritime industry Supporting the Marine Inspirations programme in Spain are also the South African based “maritime mentors” from the SATS General Botha Old Boys’ Association, which provides bursaries to deserving maritime students.

The students who will participate in the 2017 Marine Inspirations programme will be announced shortly.

For more information you can visit www. Follow Marine Inspirations on Facebook and on Twitter @marineinspire

* About Marine Inspirations

The Marine Inspirations initiative provides young people from South Africa and many other countries – who would otherwise not have access to this unique opportunity – with hands-on seamanship experience and an insight into working in the super yacht and international maritime industry. This is achieved by bringing the youngsters for actual sailing experience abroad, and for them to experience a range of skills and work experience, and to access maritime connections so as to improve the reach of their potential future career prospects.

For more information, contact Phil Wade at or Anthony Just at
Who supports Marine Inspirations?

The Marine Inspirations initiative is supported by a number of highly respected captains, yacht-owners, ship-managers and associated individuals in the maritime industry, as well as the TK Foundation, the mentoring arm of the Teekay Shipping Corporation.

The initiative is also strongly endorsed by the SATS General Botha Old Boys’ Association and Bursary Fund, which supplies funding and logistical support in Cape Town. For more information go to or send an email to Captain Keith Burchel at

* About Lawhill Maritime Centre

By providing students with specialised knowledge and skills in their last three years of secondary schooling, Simon’s Town School’s Lawhill Maritime Centre has, for the past 22 years, made it possible for hundreds of young South Africans from financially-disad-
vantaged backgrounds to embark on successful careers in the maritime and other industries.

Most students begin the Maritime Studies course knowing very little, if anything, about the maritime industry. Some may not even have seen the sea or a ship at close quarters but after three years they emerge from the Lawhill programme with a broad understanding and knowledge of the industry which greatly increases their prospects for post-school employment and/or admission to maritime-related courses at tertiary institu-

For more information, contact Debbie Owen at or 083 454 3770.