The non-profit maritime training charity UKSA has announced it has been pledged a $1.9 million, enabling the progression of plans to enhance and expand facilities with the building of a new accommodation. The largest single amount ever received by UKSA since its founding in 1987, the gift has been made by The TK Foundation – a Bahamas-based foundation that supports non-profit and youth programmes across the globe.

“The whole team at UKSA is thrilled to be in receipt of such a generous donation,” says UKSA’s Chair Kevin George. “The amount is very significant because we can now press forward with our desire to build new, modular accommodation on our site. This will substantially increase the number of people accessing and benefitting from UKSA’s transformative programmes.”

The new accommodation will reinforce the organisation’s commitment to continue growing its impact on the life skills and career prospects of young people through increasing its capacity. The new accommodation is an urgent requirement, as the demand for places at UKSA continues to grow year on year. 

“We have long supported the work UKSA undertakes and recognise the important value their programmes add to the lives of the thousands of people passing through their doors each year,” adds Dennis Treleaven, maritime programme officer from The TK Foundation. “The TK Foundation actively supports youth and maritime programmes that offer a hand up, not a handout, and that create a lasting impact, especially in terms of maritime employment opportunities, and we consider UKSA’s work to be an embodiment of these values.”

Students staying at UKSA will benefit from an improved experience, with configurable zones providing more flexible arrangements for all, alongside improved safeguarding and better disabled access. The new facilities will unlock the potential to train more professional students as they progress their careers with UKSA’s ongoing training and development programmes.

The UKSA site will remain fully operational throughout the development works, with building work commencing in the latter part of 2020 and completion of the works planned for mid-2022. UKSA has appointed Isle of Wight-based multidisciplinary consultancy ERMC to provide procurement and project support. 

“This is a significant point in the history of UKSA and we are extremely grateful to the team at The TK Foundation,” concludes UKSA CEO Ben Willows. “We will continue to seek further funding to ensure we can continue to launch as many careers as possible and create a journey of inspiration for the lives of young people. Our plans are unashamedly ambitious as we drive the organisation forward into the next decade.”

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