Five years ago, the United Nations officially ushered in what it calls its Sustainable Development Goals. Termed a “to-do list for people and planet” by the UN Secretary-General, it’s a list of measures to wipe out poverty, fight inequality, and tackle climate change by 2030. Individual citizens and corporations have adopted these goals since then, with Y.CO being among the latest. A new Y.CO partnership with YachtAid Global is one part of a larger effort to make a positive social and environmental impact.
“We often speak to clients who want to know how they can use their superyacht as a force for good,” says Charlie Birkett, Y.CO’s co-founder and CEO. In fact, he adds, Y.CO and YachtAid Global have cooperated previously, with some Y.CO fleet yacht crews pitching in as first-responders in disaster-stricken coastal regions. They’ve even saved lives, Birkett says. “Now, by formalizing this partnership, we hope to be able to encourage more of our yachts to do the same.”
Specifically, Y.CO’s staff will undergo training so that they can coordinate the yachts’ involvement in YachtAid Global projects. Similarly, the crews of yachts under Y.CO’s management will receive scenario-based training. (The company has more than 100 large yachts in its fleet.) YachtAid Global, a non-profit, mobilizes yachts to provide emergency supplies and disaster relief following hurricanes, for instance. Naturally, since megayachts cruise a number of remote regions, they can provide medical and supply assistance relatively swiftly.
Additionally, the Y.CO partnership with YachtAid Global will prioritize conservation and other humanitarian efforts. Some of the same remote regions that yachts frequent suffer from pollution, such as water pollution. Even after natural disasters, clean drinking water is a significant problem. YachtAid Global therefore has organized using onboard watermakers to help the local population. The non-profit further has supported scientists researching pelagic fish in the Eastern Pacific. On the humanitarian side, the non-profit organization has succeeded in launching the first library in the Galapagos Islands. Furthermore, it provided surf therapy for at-risk youth in Cape Town, South Africa.
“We want to raise awareness of the positive impact superyachts can have on remote regions, and ultimately foster a deeper human relationship between the yachting industry and the coastal communities it relies on,” Birkett summarizes.
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