On Friday, September 29th 2017, ACI marina Cres hosted an exceptional and wonderful gathering of children from children’s homes in Primorsko-goranska County, Pula and Karlovac, their educators, representatives of ACI and the representatives, sponsors and donors of the Foundation “Vaša pošta” (“Your Post”).
It was a day full of emotions, joy, surprises and socializing for about 60 participants of the event. Our gathering joined the mayor of the town of Cres, the director of the tourist board of the town of Cres, the harbour master, the maritime police, the director of ACI marina Cres and the employees of the marina.
The warm welcome and lunch were followed by joy and bustle when we started forming crews for the sailing boats. The kids have bravely set foot on the boats, expecting impatiently to set sail on the beautiful waters of Cres. Of course, there was a certain dose of insecurity and fear, but our skippers, great yachtsmen, soon soothed even the most worried. And there was no reason to worry because the harbour masters’ officers and the maritime police accompanied us on sea for the whole duration of our trip.
And so we set sail, first slowly- with the engine on, by the rules – no faster than 2 knots inside the bay of Cres. Even though the wind invited us to hoist sails at the very beginning, we had to follow the rules. After that, everything was ready to hoist the sails and turn off the engine. We quickly hoisted the jib (we could not hoist the main sail because the wind was too strong for just two crew members on the boat) and we started sailing… What a wonderful feeling… The silence smothered by the noise of the wind and the sailboat that cuts the sea…
The girls and guys were a little stiff at first, maybe even a little scared due to the heeling of the sailboat every time the wind filled the sails, but the skipper kept the “crew” posted on what the wind was doing, how do the sails behave, what does the crew have to do, what do we use each rope for, all in a fun and interesting way. Every member of our new crew had the opportunity to steer and briefly take control of the sailboat. The atmosphere was great, the kids were relaxed and they really enjoyed sailing and all the manoeuvres. The picture was magnificent: four sailboats sailing the bay of Cres under the watchful eye of the harbour master on the motorboat.
Three hours of sailing have passed in the blink of an eye and we needed to return to the marina where lunch awaited us in the pleasant ambience of the Mistral restaurant in ACI marina Cres. We returned to the marina, moored, jumped from the sailboat to the pontoon. Everyone was full of impressions… It was wonderful to see the bright faces of the children and of all those who were with us that day. The good atmosphere continued even during the lunch party where the men’s klapa (typical choir) Burin from Cres greeted us with a song. So, after some time, we had to go back and needed to hurry to catch the ferry.
We left the marina, but what remained are the countless “When will we meet again?” questions; „We will certainly meet again, and we believe that this event will become traditional” – promised the director of ACI, Mr. Kristijan Pavić, igniting a sincere smile on the faces of our little yachtsmen.
Eventually, everyone returned home full of impressions and positive vibes and, of course, with a great desire to meet again on Cres.
About the “Vaša pošta” Foundation:
In the Republic of Croatia, children without adequate parental care grow up in 30 children’s homes. Given life circumstances, most of the residents have to start their own life when they turn 18, which is a big challenge without the help of society and secured employment.
In 2010, Croatian Post Inc. established the “Vaša pošta” Foundation to make it easier for such children to start their independent life and provide them with financial assistance in that demanding period. Since 2010, the Foundation has secured over 400 children through life insurance policies, providing 18 million HRK for these purposes.
As a sponsor of the Foundation, ACI d.d. is actively supporting this remarkable action of Croatian Post Inc. by paying life insurance policies for the children. The collected amount is paid to the children as an annuity when they leave the home, in order to settle their basic living expenses until they find employment.
ACI d.d. has so far supported five children who grew up in homes for children without parental care and who started living independently.