Young adults from the Lake District area are being invited to apply for funding to access a career in watersports.

£6,000 has been ring-fenced specifically for residents in the area, in memory of the late Windermere resident and watersports instructor Michael (Milo) Hanlon, who died in 2013. Milo was a Superyacht Cadet at UKSA, and died in the South of France shortly after graduating from his first phase of training.

Young people age 18-25 from the Lake District can apply for funding towards Watersports Instructor Training courses at UKSA’s training centre in Cowes.

Emma Baggett, UKSA’s Industry and Cadetship Manager, explained: “As a maritime charity we are thrilled to have this fund that really benefits young people. We are especially pleased to give something back to the Lake District after the generosity of the local people who have supported the bursary, and we are pleased to help them train in Milo’s name.”

Milo’s family, friends and support from the wider yachting sector has resulted in over £35,000 being raised since the bursary fund was set up in May 2013. Many young people have benefited and new funds are needed to enable the initiative to carry on its work. The next fundraising event is a Pirates Ball which is being held at the Low Wood Bay Hotel in Windermere on Friday, April 10.

Aside from the ring-fenced £6,000, the remainder of the bursary can be allocated to other young people, who otherwise could not afford to access UKSA entry level courses in yachting, hospitality, engineering, watersports and UKSA’s Professional Yacht Cadetship.

One recipient of the funding is Rachael Mew, who at just 22 is now living the dream after turning her passion into a career. She now has the world at her feet and is in a job she loves, with a clear focus on future career progression. Like Michael, Rachael was a waterports instructor but had a dream of developing her training by going into yachting. Although she really wanted to do her Professional Yachtmaster, she just couldn’t afford it. However she applied for the Milo Hanlon Bursary and was awarded £2,000.

She said: “This is my dream, it’s what I want to do. I really want to start teaching on yachts for UKSA and get more into youth development as it’s the most amazing thing to do. I want to work with kids as it changes their lives once they start sailing. Quite a few of my friends have gone to uni and got a debt, and quite a few went into jobs at 16 and they come up to me and say they see what I’m doing from my facebook photos and the sort of life I lead, and they can’t believe it. I have a sense of freedom yet a sense of responsibility. I’m earning money, love my job and enjoy going to work every day. I say to people, get yourselves out there!”

Anyone applying for funding will be subject to a selection process, plus terms and conditions. For further details contact UKSA’s career advisors on 01983 203038, or email [email protected]. To donate towards the Bursary, go to https://www.justgiving.com/MichaelMiloHanlon