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Page last updated at 17:29 GMT, Monday, 8 November 2010
NHS Hull yacht training scheme still making waves
NHS Hull yacht
The scheme costs 500,000 a year to run

When the Hull Primary Care Trust announced they were funding a sail training scheme for unemployed young people it caused national headlines.

David Cameron, then leader of the opposition, described the decision as "completely crazy".

Defending the project NHS Hull said it was an investment in the future of local young people.

Two years on, the decision to buy the 72ft (22m) yacht, at a cost of nearly £500,000, is still dividing opinion.

Named Cat Zero, the scheme offers a 12 weeks training course for unemployed 16 to 19 year olds. It is targeted at those who are not in education, employment or training (NEET)

The government is keen to reduce the number of young people who fall into this category. A 2002 research paper by the Department for Children, Schools and Families said that NEETs cost the taxpayer an average £97,000 over their lifetime.

Danny Watson is director of the Cat Zero project. He claimed the scheme had produced "massive benefits in trying to help engage these young people into healthy lifestyle and back into work."

Others argue that the taxpayer should not be funding such a project.

Hull City councillor Stephen Brady has been a critic of the scheme since it was first announced in 2008.

He acknowledged that the project had produced some benefits for the young people involved, but said that the funds could be better used elsewhere:

"I just feel it is wrong. And I don't believe the National Health Service should be putting money into schemes like this."

The BBC's Inside Out programme was given exclusive access to the yacht. Their report was broadcast on BBC One on Monday 8 November. It is available to view on the BBC iPlayer.

Cameron attacks yacht for youths
08 Sep 09 |  Humber
NHS trust slammed over yacht fund
14 Oct 08 |  Humber


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