By all accounts, the investment to build a new Dinghy and Training Centre at Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club (RYBYC) has paid off in its first six months. In addition to the accolades of winning an award for architecture, RFBYC has experienced a huge increase in participation in Off-he-Beach (OTB) sailing and social activities.
The successful transition from old Clubhouse to new Training Centre contributed to recent growth in participation. Training Centre Principal Chelsea Hall attributed the thorough planning process by the operations team for ensuring a continuation of sailing programs throughout the demolition and building phases. “We did not have any major incidents during the entire shift, demolition and building process, and managed to keep things running smoothly from partial hand over to completion, which is a credit to our staff and Club management,” Hall said.
The RFBYC OTB Sailing participation statistics continue to top the charts for Australia. Australian Sailing recently released its Q3 participation report with RFBYC Dinghy and Training Centre (DTC) placed as the Number 1 Discover Sailing Centre in Australia for course completions. Australian Sailing’s report reflects the effort made by the RTC to promote sailing within the local community and ultimately support the Junior and Youth Pathways at the Club.
This year the DTC team facilitated over 910 participants through Training Centre Courses.
RFBYC is accredited to run Tackers, Dinghy, Keelboat, Windsurfing, OutThere Sailing and Powerboat Courses, and is first in Australia for participation in the Tackers and OutThere Sailing Courses. Participation in the Tackers 2 and Tackers 3 courses increased during the 12-month DTC development.
The new DTC also brought about a renewed vigour in the Club’s team of instructors who enable RFBYC to run fun, safe and professional training programmes. Despite the disruptions of a major onsite building project, the Club’s relationship with local schools continues to go from strength to strength, maintaining and increasing their sail training agreements with RFBYC.
Other school programs were also developed and maintained throughout this period with both senior (high) and junior (primary) schools.
RFBYC pioneered the Green and Orange Fleet Curriculum and project management for introductory sailing. During the demolition and build of the DTC, RFBYC acted as a Pilot Club for the resources produced by the National Club Pathway working group for this program. The resources will soon be accessible for all Clubs to access and utilise across Australia.
As a result of the Green and Orange Fleet program, the DTC is now at capacity. The benefit of this training programme has also resulted in many junior sailors transitioning into the Intermediate Fleet Club training and participation increasing in Club racing on Sundays.
The Club was honoured to recently host the Australian Sailing WA Region Clubs Conference in the DTC. The main room of the Centre was full of visiting Clubs’ Flag Officers, members and staff. Feedback from all visitors was highly complimentary, with most commenting on the quality and array of coaching and equipment facilities afforded by the new Centre.
Moving into the latter part of 2022 and to ensure ongoing success for the new Centre, the DTC implemented its Training Centre and Coaching Programme Working Group. This committee aims to provide more visibility on the management and operational logistics of running the Training Centre and coaching programmes as well as to assist with strategic planning.
Chelsea Hall said ‘the new DTC facility is truly magnificent, and we are now looking forward to a busy 2022–2023 Sailing Season. Our DTC provides dinghy storage, coach and administration offices, maintenance area, change rooms and canteen. The DTC set up ensures for safe and efficient operations and we look forward to what we can achieve in the coming years.”