The Carrington Award: Sarah Outen ‘Dare to Do’

On 25 September, we welcomed British athlete and adventurer, Sarah Outen MBE, to deliver a virtual talk to our Sixth Form as part of the Carrington Award. Sarah’s talk ‘Dare to Do’ discussed her adventure to circle the globe entirely alone, detailed in her book by the same title. Sarah was the first woman to row solo from Japan to Alaska, as well as the first woman to row the mid-Pacific from West to East.

Alice (LVI) shared her thoughts and reflections on the inspirational virtual talk:

“The opportunity to have Sarah speak to us live was special. I watched the documentary ‘Home’ the day before the talk. It showcased the physical trials Sarah faced on her trip around the world solely by biking across land and rowing across oceans. I was already in awe of her achievements.

Hearing Sarah speak allowed us to gain a deeper insight into the mental and emotional struggles she faced while pushing and overcoming her own limits. It was her portrayal of the journey as something that anyone can do, that left me in utter admiration. Sarah showed vulnerability and taught us that strength in the face of a hurricane isn’t impossible, an unimaginable journey like hers isn’t simply an idealistic dream, and overall, Sarah gave us the accessibility and realism that has now led me to strive to apply the same resilience and laughter in the face of everything to my own life.

For me, it is no understatement when I say that I was completely inspired by her story and have even started planning how I can, some-what, follow in her footsteps with a journey of my own. It is for this reason that I felt so lucky to speak to her afterwards and ask her personally how she went about planning her cycling route.

All in all, her story of determination and perseverance was something that everyone in the room could learn from, and we were all so lucky to hear first-hand what it takes to keep going at the absolute worst of times.”

Sarah Outen MBE tweeted about the event, sharing a behind the scenes shot of her virtual delivery: “Friday night fun presenting to @wycombeabbey 6th form from my living room, sharing tales of my journeys of the world and the mind, of storms at sea and PTSD.”

Thank you, Sarah, for a moving and impactful beginning to the Carrington Award programme this year.