Polly’s Challenge

Opportunities for all Island children

Polly’s Challenge is a funded programme for Island children aged 10 – 14 years during the school holidays.
Five action packed days help build confidence and a sense of adventure!

About the Fund

Polly’s Fund was set up to offer a special opportunity to Isle of Wight children to apply for a five-day sailing or watersports course during their summer holidays for just £20, enabling them to have fun, be adventurous and learn new skills through participation in outdoor activities.

Fundraising in the name of Polly

Due to circumstances surrounding COVID-19 in 2020 UKSA was, unfortunately, unable to run a spring or summer programme. However, this didn’t stop Polly’s wonderful friends and family who raised an astounding £35,000 for her fund through a virtual Polly’s Day to offer on-water adventures to deserving Island children at a time when they need us most. Since the launch of the programme in the summer of 2018, 254 Isle of Wight children have taken part in Polly’s Challenge and have had a summer of adventure learning at UKSA.

Since the fund was established in 2017 over £130,000 has been donated though the amazing fundraising efforts of Polly’s friends and family who rally together each year in her memory.

Making a splash again!

As you will be aware, 2020 and the first part of 2021 was very tough for us and all the young people on the Island. UKSA had to cancel or reduce all its programmes. However, thanks to a large contribution from Polly’s Fund, they were able, earlier this summer, to get 366 year 6 & 7 students out on the water for a day as part of the Test the Water programme with their classmates. Following on from their Test the Water experience 118 children have also participated in a Polly’s challenge week during the summer and autumn holidays. These children have also contributed £2,500+ this year in fundraising towards Polly’s Fund!

Help fund an adventure on the water

Looking to the future, Polly’s Fund is committed to continue supporting Isle of Wight young children, to give them the opportunity to have an adventure just as Polly wished. All money raised helps to make this dream a reality and give young people who have had their normality and freedom altered a chance to unleash a passion for adventure and the sea with their friends.

Make a donation

Who’s it for?

All island children in school years 6 to 9 can take part in Polly’s Challenge. The funding enables those who may not be able to afford to get back out on the water after taking part in UKSA Test the Water programme.

Get involved

We ask students to raise £20* for the week through sponsorship. This then goes back into Polly’s Fund to support more children in the future.

UKSA will provide all the specialist equipment your child needs; lunch will also be included. All they will need to bring is a swimsuit, towel and shoes they can get wet (full kit list will be provided).

Who can take part? Isle of Wight young people in school year 6, 7, 8 & 9.

There are limited spaces available so follow the three steps below:

Step one – Enquire

Drop us a line either by telephone to 01983 203037 (Monday to Friday 9am – 2pm) or by e-mail to [email protected]  

To provisionally book a space, you will be asked which date you are interested in, details about your child, and contact details for yourself. You will then be sent a sponsorship form which your child needs to complete to confirm their space on the programme.

Step two – Get sponsored

From tidy bedrooms, walking the dog to washing the car, each child is asked to raise a minimum of £20.00.

Step three – Complete booking

To confirm your child’s place, please contact [email protected] to pay in sponsorship money and sponsorship form.

Download sponsorship form

Don’t just take our word for it

Parent of a Polly’s Challenge Participant

“My son Brody has benefited so much from the Polly’s Challenge course, he was quite shy and not usually one to enjoy being out of his comfort zone but he absolutely took to the challenge with his confidence and enthusiasm growing each day. It has taught him to have a go at new things without fear of failure and he has used Polly’s Challenge as the inspiration to apply to the Wildlife Trust competition with his project plan to “look after the bees”, just as Polly Birch said”.