CHLOE Hutchinson had never been away from her family for more than one night.
That was until the 19-year-old, who has Williams syndrome, spent four nights aboard the STS Leeuwin II as part of the Leeuwin Ultimate Challenge for young people with a disability.
Now, Chloe knows she can achieve anything.
“I’d never been away from home for more than one night so to actually accomplish that was a big thing for me and my family,” she said.
“I had no contact with anybody.”
The Mt Lawley teenager said the Leeuwin Watch Leaders provided plenty of fun distractions to keep her mind off missing her family.
Chloe climbed masts to keep the boat on track, steered the vessel towards Rottnest Island and rotated night watch duties with other participants.
“On night watch we had to make sure the anchors were in the right spot, the fridge was at the right temperature and the engine was working,” she said.
This is the second personal milestone this year for Chloe, who made a presentation to 80 Rocky Bay staff members in January about living with a disability.
Chloe admitted that it was challenging talking about such a personal issue but said she was passionate about inspiring other people with a disability to raise awareness about it.
The Community Transition team at Rocky Bay has helped Chloe since 2017, offering support with life skills such as catching public transport and meeting new friends.