From Cape to St Helena

2018-12-04 06:01
Kerryn Bosch and Tyla Gill.

Kerryn Bosch and Tyla Gill.

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Two members of the Fish Hoek Guides have been selected from a number of nationwide applicants to sail in the Cape to St Helena race at the end of December on board the 39-foot JML Rotary Scout yacht.

The girls, Kerryn Bosch (15) and Tyla Gill (16), are over the moon. The event involves racing to the island of St Helena as part of a crew of eight, as well as intensive training beforehand, including an overnight trip out to sea to get ready.

They will depart from False Bay Yacht Club on Wednesday 26 December and have until the race cut-off date of Tuesday 15 January 2019 to reach the island.

A short time to explore the historic island of St Helena will be granted, before heading back to Cape Town on Wednesday 16 January – a journey that will take two to three weeks, as they will be sailing against the trade winds. They will be blogging during the trip and after returning will be available for presentations to share their experiences with those with an interest in future race participation, sailing or the Scout and Guide movements.

Tyla’s mother, Caroline, says the girls have been putting in a lot of work. “They have been doing the sailing for some time but this is the first time they are going into a big ocean. They are excited and nervous – so are the parents – but they have been training, they will be fine. They are also going in with well-experienced skippers so there is nothing to worry about.”

Kerryn and Tyla frequently take part in sailing endeavours, for example the Mac 24-hour race, the local Scout sailing competitions and regattas and training at the False Bay Yacht Club. In August and September 2018, they led a Girl Guide Seamanship team against the Scouts in an open-sea sailing competition. They finished fifth overall for sailing and won an endurance trophy for their other activities. “They will be sailing forth and back. They had to submit CVs, do training, and they had to do theory for sailing. Who thought you need to do theory for sailing, but that prepared them. We are glad that they are home schooled so they could put in so much work to train because we could adjust their studying time. Training allowed them to sail both directions while others do one,” adds Caroline

A total of 14 teams entered and it was the first time the Girl Guides participated. The girls were also recently invited to be instructors on the Sea Scout sailing course, representing GGSA. They take pride in representing Girl Guides South Africa in what they do and are looking forward to an opportunity to be ambassadors for the organisation.

Both girls require financial assistance to undertake the adventure. The trip to St Helena amounts to about R26 000 each (including special requirements such as offshore gear and a medical emergency fund) and there has been very little time to raise the money.

“They really need help to raise funds and they are doing whatever they can to raise the much-needed funds. They are currently raising funds through selling fudge, brownies, date squares and raffle tickets but any sponsorship or donations would be welcome. It is certainly needed to help the girls reach their goal,” says Caroline.

One can assist the girls in any way – order their sweet treats, provide donation or sponsorship.

References from their Guide and sailing leaders will be available on request for sponsors.VContact the girls’ mothers, Julie Bosch ( or Caroline Gill (, for further details on sponsorship or ordering goods.


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