A 12-year-old girl who battled cancer four years ago is back home after a four-day sailing adventure.
Ruby Kendle, from Woolsthorpe-by-Belvoir, joined 25 other young people between the age of eight and 18 in recovery from cancer to help crew five yachts sailing around the Solent on the south coast from July 27-30.
For Ruby, who finished cancer treatment in April 2011 for Right Cerebellar Pilocytic Astrocytoma, Bilateral Optic Nerve Gliomas and Neurofibramatosis Type 1 at Queen’s Medical Centre, this was her first time sailing with the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust.
She said: “I have definitely been out of my comfort zone – I normally don’t like to leave my mum.”
Sailing onboard 42-48 foot cruising yachts, the trust trips provide a chance for the young people to test themselves in a safe and supportive environment, encouraging them to work as a team and get involved in everything from helming the boat to cooking.
Ruby continued: “I’ve loved every minute – it has been one of the best experiences of my life.”
Launched in 2003, the aim of the Trust is to give young people in recovery from cancer the chance to rebuild their confidence through sailing.
Dame Ellen, who tries to spend a day on as many trips as possible, adds, ‘The mental and social fall-out from cancer can be just as devastating as the physical illness. Everything we do is about building confidence, self-esteem and having fun together.’
In its 12th year, the trust has grown beyond every expectation into a national charity, working with every young person Principal Treatment Centre and a growing number of Designated Units in the UK.
To find out more visit www.ellenmacarthurcancertrust.org