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OY THEINVESTING EXPERI
May 12, 2011
UNDER the command of LCDR
Damien Munchenberg, STS
Young Endeavour was nearing
the end of an 11-day voyage
from Mackay to Brisbane crewed by
28 young men and women collectively
known as the "youth crew" when I
They had joined LCDR Munchenberg
and his staff of 10 for the voyage.
Few of the 28 knew much about sail-
ing, square-rigged ships or life at sea
when they stepped aboard. But it was a
far different picture when they stepped
ashore from their adventure under sail.
They came as individuals, they left as
team players and with many new friends.
The youth crew took away new skills
and experiences such as standing watch
on the bridge at 3.50am as strong Coral
Sea winds howled through the rigging
and filled the sails. They took turns help-
ing the 'chef' not only with food prepara-
tion and delivery but with the washing
up. They quickly learned some important
nautical terms such as "hands to tacking
stations", "standby to wear ship", "brace
the yards, let go and haul" and "all spare
hands to the jib".
The youth crew was instructed on
subjects varying from weather to celestial
navigation. Despite the challenge of com-
munal living at sea, hard work and the
unusual sleep patterns, there was time to
relax with new friends and explore the
inner Great Barrier Reef.
The youth crew also formed a concert
troupe and staged performances -- Justin
Beiber's Baby Baby was a regular.
Close friendships were formed and
as the journey neared its end there were
many emotional moments.
Young Endeavour's arrival at Navy
Headquarters South Queensland wharf
did not, however, end the experience for
the youth crew.
Coming aboard for a half-day sea
ride were 12 young people nominated
by the Queensland Down Syndrome
Association, and three from Brisbane's
Hear and Say Centre.
As Young Endeavour reversed course
towards Moreton Bay the order was given
-- "two, six, heave" -- to set sails, and the
newcomers were soon beside the more
experienced youth crew hauling on lines.
Several took the wheel and called the
headings from the compass under the
watchful eye of LCDR Munchenberg.
"It was fantastic," they declared upon
The youth crew spent their last night
at sea on April 28 and returned to their
homes the following day. A new crew of
24 young people joined the 240-tonne
sailing ship in Brisbane in early May,
starting an 11-day voyage along the east
coast of Australia to Young Endeavour's
home port of Sydney.
Young Endeavour will now undergo a
seven-week maintenance period at HMAS
Waterhen, culminating with a mariners'
Young Endeavour and the young
people who sail in her are administered
by the not-for-profit Young Endeavour
Youth Scheme, based at Garden Island in
The RAN crews and maintains
the ship within the Mine Warfare,
Hydrographic and Patrol Boat Force,
delivering an internationally recognised
development program for more than
500 young Australians each year. The
program aims to increase self awareness,
develop teamwork and leadership skills,
and foster a strong sense of community
Since 1988 more than 11,000 young
Australians from all walks of life and
socio-economic backgrounds have com-
pleted sail training voyages. A similar
number of youngsters with special needs
have taken part in day sails in ports
around the country.
Voyages generally span 11 days and
are open to all Australians aged 16-23.
Youth crew are selected via a biannual
ballot, which is open now until June 5.
Information regarding the Young
Endeavour Youth Scheme and voyage
opportunities is available at www.young-
The ship is always looking for poten-
tial staff crew members. If you think you
have the necessary personal attributes,
apply to your NPCMA career manager
for an 11-day suitability voyage.
Young Endeavour's world
When the UK gave Sail Training Ship Young Endeavour
to Australia in 1988, then-Prime Minister Bob Hawke
declared the vessel would "benefit the young people
of Australia". But has the sleek blue-hulled sailing
ship with its core crew of RAN officers and sailors
lived up to that charter? Graham Davis sea rode in
Young Endeavour on April 28 and came up with a
DAYS OF SAIL: STS Young
Endeavour off the coast of
Photo: ABIS James McDougall
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