Tall Ship Unicorn joins the Tall Ships Festival 2007 fleet with innovative programs and sail training opportunities for young women. The Unicorn operates the Sisters Under Sail leadership development program for teenage girls through sail training. Its mission is to build confidence, enhance self-esteem, develop social conscience and teach the value of women working together towards a common goal. The ship’s co-owner and CEO, Dawn Santamaria, feels it is a unique and effective way to intervene and chart a new course for young women. “Nova Scotia has a great sail training community and people are as interested in our program as they are in the ship which makes it a tremendous visit for us in terms of recruiting and awareness.” said Mrs. Santamaria. Self-Fulfillment, Education and Achievement through Sail Training and Responsibility (SEASTAR) is a Nova Scotia based, non-profit charitable society committed to the advancement of young people through the development of life skills and experience aboard tall ships. “Sail training and leadership development are integral aspects of our sail training program with the Tall Ships Nova Scotia Festival, the Unicorn embodies both,” said Sheila Brown, chair of SEASTAR. The ship, Unicorn, has indeed come along way since it was built in 1947 under the name Deo Volente and was tasked with trawling the North Atlantic’s fishing grounds for 32 years. When its fishing days were over, it was acquired by a Dutch skipper and his wife, and by 1979 it had been converted into a sailing ship and renamed Eenhorn or one horn, Dutch for Unicorn. In 1986, Eenhorn was sold to Morris Henson, brother to Muppeteer Jim Henson. Mr. Henson registered the vessel under the British flag and sailed it out of the West Indies, Caribbean and Spanish coast as a charter vessel and treasure seeker. The Unicorn, an American and Canadian certified training ship, sailed under the name True North for most of the ’90s. In the fall of 1999, it was acquired by current owners, Dawn and Jonathan Santamaria of New Jersey. In December 2003, the schooner was rechristened with its original name, Unicorn. In 2005, Unicorn was granted a waiver to become a United States registered vessel, and has set sail with a new course — an innovative leadership program for young women. The full fleet of confirmed Tall Ships, out ports and the event program for the Halifax waterfront will be unveiled on Wednesday, April 25.