At the helm of a charity aiming to boost the confidence of disabled and disadvantaged islanders by giving them the opportunity to become 'captain' of a ship, it's no surprise that Dina Cook loves the sea.
In fact, it's one of the Wetwheels Operations Director's favourite things about Jersey, and a passion she aims to share with others.
Wetwheels Jersey takes more than 1,000 islanders of all ages on its fast catamaran each year, giving the majority of them their first ever experience on the water.
While lockdown has affected the charity's operations and funding, Dina has vowed that the virus won’t stand in the way of them delivering feelgood experiences in future.
Although trips have had to be altered and additional safety and hygiene measures put in place, Dina promises: "...Our passengers can still feel the exhilaration of the wind in their hair and the sea spray on their face – and for many that is what a trip on Wetwheels is about."
“This hasn’t been an easy time for anyone but now we are back up and running we want to carry as many people as we safely can. I’d love to hear from groups, families or schools who want to explore on Wetwheels, and of course we are also hoping to attract more funding and donations to make sure 2021 is better than ever," she added.
Here are her five favourite things about Jersey...
I feel very privileged to have been born in Jersey and surrounded by the sea. Whether it be on a sail or motor boat or swimming, I just love to be by the ocean. We are blessed with some beautiful beaches and the water is very clear. I‘m not so keen on the seaweed though!
Pictured: Dina just loves being by the sea - even braving the cold of winter to catch razor fish on the coast.
Fortunately, all of my family have a love of the sea/beach and one of my favourite relaxing days is to take a walk with them low-water fishing. We tend to walk to Seymour Tower, attempting to catch some razor fish along the way. We have done this in the freezing cold in winter as well as on a lovely warm summer’s day.
We have some of the best coastal paths with breath-taking scenery and, of course, whilst walking I get to see the sea! Having taken part in the Island Walk on a couple of occasions, you really get to see the Island from a different perspective. The views on the North Coast are spectacular.
Pictured: There are so many beautiful paths to explore in Jersey, many with coastal views.
We are also very lucky that we have a lot of countryside and some great lanes to explore on foot or on a cycle. I recently went for a walk on the sand dunes, something I had not done in many years and I had forgotten just how enjoyable it is.
I try to recycle or upcycle whatever I can, and I love the ease with which the site at La Collette allows us to do this. It is also good to see how busy and well used it is. However, I would like to see more recycling done locally, as I believe there is still a large number of people who do not do this. I would also like to see less unnecessary, packaging on food items.
Pictured: The recycling facilities at La Collette are top-notch...let's see more of this!
I and my wider family significantly have reduced our use of single-use plastic. For example, we use cotton mesh bags when buying fruit or veg in the supermarket and have reduced the use of single-use plastic food bags for storage. A small step, but if more people did this it would soon make a difference.
I love the social side of Jersey and the huge choice of very good restaurants that we have on our doorstep. Eating out with family or friends is a big part of life. I lived in North Devon for a while and, whilst it is a beautiful part of the UK, there was a distinct lack of restaurants nearby.
Pictured: We may not always appreciate it, but we truly are spoilt for choice when it comes to dining options.
Until then, I had not appreciated what great choice Jersey has to offer. We also have a very good high street, with a good choice of shops and brands and it’s very clean. Once again, I didn’t appreciate it as much as I do now having lived somewhere with a very run down high street.
I love the generosity and kindness of the people in Jersey. Whether it's people who give money or their time to good causes, both are equally as important.
Wetwheels Jersey is able to provide trips to disabled and disadvantaged people on a purpose-built motorboat because we have volunteer skippers and crew who give up their time to ensure the boat is out as much as demanded.
Pictured: It's the generous volunteer spirit of islanders that makes endeavours like Wetwheels Jersey possible.
Last year, we ran 169 trips taking out 1,154 passengers - a service we provide free of charge.
Without our volunteers, we would not be able to offer these trips for free, which would mean not everyone would be able to enjoy time aboard.