SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) – The Kidz at Sea Foundation recently welcomed new students to its boat building class of its Build Your Future project.
The project acts as an introduction to the marine sector on Sint Maarten. It enables students of the Milton Peters College (MPC) between 14 and 18 years to join a special boat building class for several months and take sailing lessons in their spare time.
Minister of Tourism & Economic Affairs Hon. Stuart Johnson would like to welcome the new students who have joined the Kidz at Sea project.
The current boat building team consists of the following students: Rayzjeldrick Karel, Jason Gumbs, Natercia Eleonora, Owean Brown, Nyssa Williams and Kyshani Hyman.
Johnson added that this opportunity offers the youngsters an insight into the marine sector and what it entails by directly getting the experience from building a boat from scratch.
Via the Build Your Future project and other activities, the Kidz at Sea Foundation stated in a recent statement that it is dedicated to providing young person’s access to career opportunities in the marine sector of St. Maarten.
“The marine sector of the country which is an integral part of the national economy is dependent on healthy coastal and ocean resources. Our marine sector can be broken down into land-based activities and services offered by a variety of marine service companies from boat products to boat repair, painting etc.
“We have the dive sector with a number of companies offering snorkeling and diving explorations within the protected marine park and beyond the country’s coastal shorelines. This sector generates a significant amount of foreign exchange to the local economy. There are the boat charter and sailing companies that provide a niche of services and experiences for stay-over and cruise guests.
“The mega and giga-yachts is another area that contributes to the marine sector of the country. The marina’s stretched across the Simpson Bay Lagoon is testament to the vibrancy of the sector and the various businesses that provide support services.
“Overall, each niche sector creates and provides job opportunities for the nation’s youth. The Kidz at Sea Foundation is a steppingstone to opportunities and applaud them for their efforts and the stakeholders that support the foundation,” Minister of Tourism & Economic Affairs Stuart Johnson said on Friday.
According to a statement from the Kidz at Sea Foundation, the boat that is being built by the students is a Didi 26 designed by Dudley Dix, and affectionately referred to as Hull #2.
This boat will become the sister ship of Purple Heart, the previous sloop built by MPC Vocational students. When put to sea, this world-class racing designed vessel sails with six crew.