Lauren Monoghan, 15, from Ballymoney recently took part in an inspirational sailing trip with the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, along with eight other young people in recovery from cancer.
Lauren joined the crew of one of the yachts, to sail on the Firth of Clyde in Scotland from 20-23 July, in a four-day yacht adventure.
For Lauren, who finished cancer treatment in January 2014 for Craniopharynglioma at the Royal Belfast Hospital, this was her second time sailing with the Trust. She said: “It’s scary to get out of your comfort zone but after a few hours sailing together the whole crew felt like family – it’s so great to get out of hospital and meet people who have been the same things – you don’t feel alone.”
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.
Lauren continued: “There was a very calm and relaxing atmosphere and my favourite part of the trip was sitting, chatting and playing giant Jenga with the others!”
During the trips, the Trust fleet navigates the waters of the Firth of Clyde, making various stopovers including Port Bannatyne on the Isle of Bute.