Ellen MacArthur Trust Turns Cowes Blue!

Today is the inaugral Skandia Cowes Week Charity Day for the Ellen MacArthur Trust (EMT). The sun might be shining, but everyone looks a bit blue this morning to honour the Trust’s official colour. Everyone at Cowes is being asked to wear something blue, be it a wristband, spinnaker or wig, to show their support for the Trust. Some have taken the idea to its extreme, most notably Dick Johnson, official radio commentator, seen out on the water with a bright blue moustache!

Launched in 2003, the Trust takes young people suffering from serious illnesses such as cancer and leukaemia on sailing trips to help them regain their confidence and independence. See previous story .
Events are being held in aid of EMT throughout the day, and at 18:00hrs six of Britain’s top sailors will race against each other off Cowes Parade. This will be followed by the Ellen MacArthur Trust Ball, to be attended by Trust patrons Dame Ellen MacArthur and double Olympic gold medallist Shirley Robertson.

We caught up with Ellen this morning to ask her why people should support EMT during Charity Day.
She said: “The kids speak for themselves. What we’ve done and achieved as Team Ellen allows us to make a difference in other ways. If we can make a difference through sailing, which we’re so passionate about, then that’s great. Anyone can sail, whatever their age or ability, so helping these children through sailing really works. For most of the children, coming on a trip with the Trust is really the first opportunity they have to get out of the treatment room and away from home. For the kids, it’s a chance to really get involved in something new. It’s not an hour’s sailing lesson or a day-trip on a boat: they eat, sleep and live on the boats for days. It must be so hard, such a wrench, for parents to let their children go away, but so rewarding to have them come home smiling again.”

If you want to join in and support the Ellen MacArthur Trust and Skandia Cowes Week Charity Day, blue wristbands will be on sale at the Trust’s stand in the Parade Village all week. Keep an eye on yachting world.com for further updates throughout the day.