The opening of the Duncan Renouf Jetty at Porirua
After four years of hard work, Sailability Wellington Trust celebrated the opening of The Duncan Renouf Jetty on Sunday 18th November at Titahi Bay Boating Club. Over three hundred sailors, supporters and sponsors of Sailability Wellington gathered for the event. Photos below.
Sailability Wellington and members of the club hosted the Hon. Grant Robertson, – Minister of Sport, who formally opened the jetty. Porirua Mayor Mike Tana, other community leaders were in attendance as well as the America’s Cup, (The Auld Mug) which was on loan from the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron.
It was some five years back, when Sailability Wellington decided to expand into the Kapiti and Mana and Horowhenua areas, and discovered that it was not within the capacity of any of the yacht clubs in the region to provide facilities for sailors with disabilities.
So, in a ‘quirky reversal’ of the way things are usually done, this new ‘all tide’ jetty at the Titahi Bay Boating Club, was conceived, designed and financed by Sailability Wellington Trust. At a cost of over $250,000, the trust gathered that amount of money over a two year period. It was a herculean task for a small charitable trust, – more so because that amount was achieved without government or council assistance.
Community Trusts and Gaming Trusts supplied most of the money. In all our press releases and on the day of the opening, the gaming trusts were given due recognition for their good work, and indeed there are two acknowledgement signs on the jetty.
Sailability Wellington volunteers take their members out on the water five days a week, – weather permitting! It currently has 3 bases, with 190 sailors and over 70 volunteers. They welcome people with all sorts of disabilities, and enable them to enjoy the sport of sailing. The members of Sailability Wellington Club each sail within their own capacity, often learning to sail solo and to race. While the number of sailors may seem big, the trust is aware that they still have a waiting list of nearly 90 ‘would be’ sailors. This will be mightily reduced with this new facility!
Our trust has simply responded to the call from those people who can’t enjoy the sport of sailing any other way. The last five years have seen us make massive capital expenditure. We now own 27 boats and hope to encourage support from the public for an increasing administrative budget.
Once again, thank you for believing in us and supporting this cause. We hope the festive season will bring you respite, joy and revitalized energy to face the future.
Kind regards from all the crew
The following 5 photos were taken by Rob Penhey from the Kapiti Camera Club
Finishing touches before the regatta and official opening.