About American Seafarers

American Seafarers is an Expedition Sailing Crew Summer Program we are developing to give kids the opportunity to see some incredible sights while learning important life skills that they will carry throughout their entire lives. We are building a real 75ft wooden gaff rigged schooner designed to tough working ship standards, that will sail with six kids of 15 to 19 years of age for two six week summer sessions. Our goal is to begin taking on young seafarers in the summer 2019.

The skills we are focused on developing are of course, the ability to sail and the various individual skills involved as well as teamwork, leadership, accountability to one’s self, and various other skills and activities such as fishing, ocean science, sustainability, conservation, cooking and maintenance. Most importantly, kids will have a great time visiting and vacationing at some amazing places along the New England Coastline, and will come home prepared to be contributing members of society having learned what it means have some self esteem, to be part of a team and have the confidence and fortitude to tackle the challenges that life hands to all of us from time to time.

Our fund raising campaign sponsored by the Fund for American Seafarers, Inc. focuses on developing the capital needed to buy the materials and labor needed to build the sailing vessel. Our ship is designed right down to the very bolts and timbers to support and provide the spaces needed to run the various aspects of an expedition sailing and learning program, as well as the spaces to provide kids a fun and traditional New England style sailing platform. The ship is designed to provide a full host of activities, educational programs, as well as provide that small bit of needed personal space that is not available in today’s hobby sailing platforms. Any excess funding collected at this time will be funneled directly into American Seafarers Scholarship Fund. The Scholarship Fund will raise money annually to allow us to send ANY kid sailing with us regardless of financial ability.

We strongly believe that by giving kids the cultural and critical life skills head-start they need to succeed in life, along with passion for their community and environment, that they will become community leaders; that the effects of our program will have a broader impact on the communities when our Seafarers return.

  2 comments for “About American Seafarers

  1. January 22, 2017 at 4:12 pm

    I first got into maritime work as a high school student in Washington, DC. I worked aboard the Chesapeake Lightship. I started off in the Deck Department, worked my way up to Assistant to the Radio Officer and later because Senior Helmsman on the Chesapeake. When I was 17, I was named skipper of a 45-foot harbor tug. Now I hold a 200 ton Master’s license and I am training to be a Relief Captain on the Schooner A.J. Meerwalk, a 115-foot oyster schooner. I am also an engineer with a proud history of having worked on Nobel prize winning projects and next generation technology.

    My point (to parents AND kids) is that the two things are not necessarily exclusive and life afloat has prepared me for a LOT of my every day life including with dealing with my superiors and subordinates. This is an excellent opportunity to learn skills and create experiences that will ALWAYS set you apart from your peers! Go for it!

  2. Donald Litton
    March 8, 2017 at 10:10 pm

    I saw a posting of yours at Cruisers Forum. You are doing JUST the program I WANTED to do many years ago in Santa Barbara. At the time there was a Gloucester schooner there that was going up for sale. I was a young kid with dreams of starting a program like yours, but it was just too much for me to pull together. So I went and became a teacher. Good luck to you all!

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