The crew of the s/v Ruach for its voyage to Townsville along with members from YWAM Ships Newcastle and local dignitaries: Ms. Sharon Claydon MP, Mr. Timothy Crakanthorp MP, Frank Cordingley former interim General Manager of Newcastle city Council, Captain Ian McLeod and Mr. John Church, Newcastle Councillor.


The staff, local friends and supporters of YWAM Ships Newcastle (YSN) gathered at Queens Wharf on Monday 20th May, 2019 to farewell the s/v Ruach as the vessel was deployed on its second trip to Papua New Guinea (PNG). The vessel will re-join the existing work of YWAM Ships in PNG, delivering vital medical and training services to the isolated and remote islands of the region.

The 37 meter schooner was generously given to YWAM Ships Newcastle in 2016 by Mr Hans-Ulrich Birenstihl, founder of Swiss Charity Jurgendheim Sternen AG. After sailing from Europe, a journey of over 14,000 nautical miles, the s/v Ruach arrived in Australia in January 2017 before being deployed on its first medical mission to Papua New Guinea the following October.

The initial deployment to PNG last year was a success and YWAM Ships Newcastle was able to build relationships with both the local and provincial medical and education authorities to ascertain where we could best be of service.After eight months in the Milne Bay Province, the s/v Ruach then returned to Newcastle to undergo maintenance and refurbishments needed to successfully operate in the tropics.


As an Ambassador for the City of Newcastle we were thrilled to be joined by our MPs Mr Tim Crakanthorp and Ms Sharon Claydon and Councillor John Church.

Mr Crakanthorp emphasised the work needed to be done and the “multiplying effect of you being there, not just in the medical interactions.” “You will be missed but we know you are doing great things!”


Mr Church also congratulated everyone involved “What a journey it’s been to bring the Ruach to the Province of Milne Bay” and concluded with expectations: “We’re looking forward to hear reports of great work!”

Also present to see us off were Frank Cordingley,  former interim general manager of the Newcastle city Council, Mike Rabbitt, former NBN presenter and Captain Ian McLeod.


We are so thankful for the support of The City of Newcastle, with a special mention to Roads and Maritime Services and the Brewery who generously made possible for the s/v Ruach to stay at Queens Wharf during its time in Newcastle. Our work would not be possible without such a partnership with our city.

The vessel, which has become somewhat of an icon at Queen’s Wharf, will be missed but we are thrilled to be heading back to Papua New Guinea to get on with the work ahead of us.


More pictures of the event here.