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Making a Difference with Used Sails

What do you do with those old sails stored in your garage? Make a difference.

Windmill Fleet-member Chris Bunge recently researched non-profit groups that recycle or repurpose old sails. He connected with Sails For Sustenance (SFS), a non-profit organization based in Miami, Florida that recycles and distributes them to substance fishermen in Haiti. These sails, made from modern materials and manufacturing processes, allow Haitian fisherman to sail further, faster and safer than their makeshift sails of discarded flour sacks and plastic sheeting.

In March 2017, Fleet 60 collected twelve Windmill sails to donate to Sails for Sustenance. Fleet members flaked, rolled and prepared sails for transport, and two members drove to Florida to deliver the donated Windmill sails to SFS’s Miami coordinator, Michael Laas.

This year at Docks-out, Windmill Fleet 60 will be collecting used sails for Sails For Sustenance. We encourage all fleets to participate and bring your unused, old sails to be delivered to Miami in March 2018.

About Sails for Sustenance

Since 2006, SFS has recycled sails, donated in the United States, by distributing them to subsistence fishermen in Haiti.

Volunteers throughout the US collect used sails for SFS at yacht clubs, racing clubs, sail lofts and regattas.

All donated sails are processed at SFS headquarters in Miami, FL prior to being shipped to Haiti. SFS inspects and catalogs donated sails according to condition, material and size. Sails are stripped of battens and tackle, then flaked, rolled and packed for shipment. Sails are primarily shipped to Port-au-Prince, Haiti via freight through a partnership with Food For The Poor as well as independent freight companies.

Sails for Sustenance is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Contributions, both in-kind and monetary, are tax deductible. Visit SFS at for more information about this program.