"When I think of the trips, I just think of the fun that I’m having."
Now in that role herself, she says the sense of responsibility she feels never gets in the way of everyone coming together to have a great time: “When I think of the trips, I just think of the fun that I’m having.”
As a medic, she slots around young peoples’ routines on trips to make sure they take their medication.
But she gets as involved as they do in all of the on-board responsibilities: making cups of tea, preparing the boat for sail, and, of course, playing games.
"It’s extremely nice to be a volunteer and to have gone full circle."
After years of spending summers with the Trust, Kirstie sees the changes in young people as they return for trips again and again. She says it’s similar to the confidence boost felt at the end of trips, but on a bigger scale.
By helping young people with their medication while they get involved with running a yacht, she sees her role as normalising people’s needs.
“That’s what I think is really nice about the trips. Everyone talks openly about medicine or other requirements.”
"When they see that other people have to take as many medicines as they do, it just kind of normalises it."
Having been a young person herself, she now feels ‘more or less like a big sister’ – casually asking round if everyone has taken their medicine.
“It’s just prompting people to take ownership of their medicine. When they see that other people have to take as many medicines as they do, it just kind of normalises it.”
Kirstie says the whole point of the trips is to have fun, and that no one gets left behind just because they’re on medication or require additional help.
“Everyone gets the same opportunities with the Trust.”
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