The 5thInternational Council of Yacht Clubs (ICOYC) European Regional Conference,hosted by the Royal Malta Yacht Club concluded successfully following anintensive two days of fruitful discussions.
TheConference hosted delegates from some of the most prestigious European YachtClubs that form part of the Council, whose mission is to foster closerelations, at Flag Officer and General Management level, between leading yachtclubs around the world.
Representativesfrom Germany, Belgium, Italy, Denmark, Norway, Italy and the United Kingdom, aswell as a guest delegate from the United States, attended what was described asa productive weekend where they had the opportunity to engage in discussions,networking and think tank exercises.
“ThisConference was an excellent opportunity for the Royal Malta Yacht Club toengage in fruitful discussions and exchange of ideas, from which we believe theClub will be able to further improve its operations and what it offers to its’members” commented Godwin Zammit, Commodore of the Royal Malta Yacht Club.
TheConference agenda saw local speakers contribute to the key areas of discussion,which included youth engagement, the growth of the J70 Class popularity as wellas Club Management and the role of the volunteer versus the employed paid professional. Lengthy discussions also took placefocusing on the traditional ways of communication and how social and digitalMedia are becoming an integral part of the way Clubs communicate to furtherstrengthen their reach with members.
Achallenge faced by all Clubs is Membership. Delegates discussed the variousdrives being undertaking to recruit younger blood to leadership positionswithout letting go of the traditions that is the essence of long establishedClubs that form part of the Council.
The decision of the International ParalympicCommittee to exclude sailing from the 2020 Games and onward was criticised by delegates.Many yacht clubs operate sailing programs for persons with a disability andresults show that being active in such sports is exceptionally helpful for thesepersons to develop new skills away from their everyday life on dry land. The delegatesagreed that they would work towards the possible reintroduction of sailing as aParalympic sport for the 2024 Games.
"The Royal Malta Yacht Club did anoutstanding job as a host. The delegates enjoyed exceptional hospitality andorganisation, both from a discussion perspective and the social events. Onbehalf of the ICOYC, I would like to thank Commodore Godwin Zammit, the Club's Committee,members and staff for making this conference a success in every sense." saidGero Brugmann, Vice President of the ICOYC.
The 5thICOYC European Region Conference was supported by Yachting Malta.