Our Impact


Our Impact! 


Our mission is to put smiles on faces and it’s something that we feel really passionate about. By giving people with disabilities something to laugh about, we can help them forget about their difficulties, relax and make very special memories. Read our members’ stories below and see for yourself what makes them smile.

Meet Richard

Left with limited mobility following an accident at home, retired vet Richard Griffiths is now confined to a wheelchair. Boating trips organised by Cowes Sailability Club give him a great deal of pleasure, even in wet and windy weather.

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Meet Myles

For the last six years, Myles and his mum Sarah have been able to enjoy boating trips organised by Cowes Sailability Club during the Cowes Week Regatta – and year after year Myles almost bursts with happiness and excitement.

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Meet William

William is a pupil at a secondary school for children with learning difficulties and complex needs on the Isle of Wight. He and his classmates love the excitement of boating trips organised by Cowes Sailability Club.

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Meet David

Julie Bell took part in one of Cowes Sailability Club’s excursions during Cowes Week with her 24-year old son David, who is non-verbal, epileptic and wheelchair-bound.

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Meet Sue

As one of the founding members of the club, Sue Harold has been enjoying sailing and boating trips with Cowes Sailability for over 15 years. She enjoys socialising with members, always accompanied by her guide dog Ula.

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Meet Toby

Knocked down by a drunk driver in an horrific road accident, Toby sustained serious brain damage and spent six months in hospital. He is now beginning to rebuild his life by getting involved in Cowes Sailability Club.

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Meet Matthew

Using sign language to communicate, Matthew is an enthusiastic and social member of Cowes Sailability Club. He loves to take charge of the helm during boating trips and wishes he could sail all year round!

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Meet Simon

Blind since the age of 11, Simon O’Connor has discovered “a whole new world” since joining Cowes Sailability Club. He has regained confidence, made friends and become an enthusiastic sailor.

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Meet Samuel

Eighteen-year-old Samuel had the time of his life when his mum arranged a surprise boating trip for him with Cowes Sailability Club. Unimpeded by his learning difficulties, he enjoyed new experiences, learned helming skills and even had an ice cream.

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Meet Wendy

When Wendy was born prematurely with cerebral palsy, doctors told her family that she would never learn to walk – but she did and now she is also learning to sail. An enthusiastic member of Cowes Sailability Club, she has formed new friendships and grown in confidence through boating and sailing.

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Meet Jenny

When she was unexpectedly diagnosed with a rare joint condition, Jenny thought she would have to say goodbye to her dreams of sailing trips around the Isle of Wight. But, with Cowes Sailability Club’s support and encouragement, her dreams are now coming true.

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Meet Bill

After being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, Bill used to take round trips on the car ferry to Southampton, just for the pleasure of being on the sea. Now he can actually dip his hands in the waves while sailing and boating with Cowes Sailability Club.

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Meet Eric

Blind for nearly 50 years, Eric nonetheless lives a full life. Between supporting Charlton Athletics and collecting railway memorabilia, he enjoys nothing more than sailing with Cowes Sailability Club.

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Meet Andy

Sport of all kinds had been a major part of Andy’s life until he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and became confined to a wheelchair. Through Cowes Sailability Club, he has discovered a passion for a new sport and gained all the rewards of being part of a team again.

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Meet Paul

A lifelong sailing enthusiast, Paul Scivier was devastated when he had to give up his favourite pastime after being diagnosed with Huntington’s disease. Now, however, he is back on the water with the support of Cowes Sailability Club, and being encouraged to helm again alongside his wife and daughters.

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Meet Danielle

Challenged with a severe sight impairment, Danielle Burgess never thought she would sail or helm a motorboat. But the volunteers at Cowes Sailability Club are her eyes and she enjoys nothing more than racing through the waves with the wind and salty spray in her face.

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The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service

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Supported by Ventnor Rotary Club