Another link in the strong relationship between Real Futures and Soldiers Point Marina is the operation of the sailing school program.

The marina funds the costs of its operation and acts as host base, as well as storing and maintaining a growing fleet of sailing craft. They include eight Optimists (the basic training dinghy), three Lasers, a Topper, a refurbished Etchells yacht plus a 6m tender rescue boat.

Under the guidance of Graham Oborn and his team of qualified sailing instructors, students from Tomaree High  and St Philip’s schools are given a taste of what it is like to sail on the beautiful Port Stephens waterway. Results have been excellent with young sailors who came through the school now competing in state and national regattas.

But the students participating are picking up more than sailing skills, with self-discipline and self-sufficiency a welcome and deliberately sought by-product of the sailing program.

The sailing school also offers lessons to youngsters and adults in the school holidays.