Help girl achieve sailing dreams!

Ahoy! my name is Kiana, and at the beginning of this year a dream of mine came true: I became a boat mom. I originally intended to take this old boat, Mara Noka, from Panama to the United States where I would be able to find a job and work on the boat. However, as I found myself crewless (and not at all wanting to find any), my plans changed. Mara Noka then proceeded to take me across the Caribbean, as much as I took him, and the two of us made it safely through the windward passage and to the north coast of the Dominican Republic, where we are waiting out hurricane season. I have been working very hard on all boat projects, large and small during my time here, and it is fantastic to see progress being made and to be able to get to know my boat so intimately. No job for me, as of yet, though, so I'm still struggling on the money front. But I have just enough to eat, and I have all the supplies I need, so for now I'm doing just great!!! Click on "updates" to read more on how I have been doing, and how the jobs are coming along, or visit my website

Below is my original GoFundMe post:

Just a few days ago I turned 22, and was also presented with an opportunity of a lifetime. However, it requires my immediate attention and arose at a time where my funds are running low. So I am asking for your help...

When I was 19, I came to a realization that the life I had been leading—although filled with achievements in the modern social world; including: conquests in academics, the workforce, and material comfort—was not filling some deeper sense of purpose I held within myself. Consequently, I immediately began planning an escape from what I had considered and been told to be “real life,” and six months later I was gone. I had ideas in mind of what I wanted to find and plans on how to achieve it all; but, little did I know, less than a month after beginning my journey, all of my plans would be thrown overboard, and wind would fill sails I didn’t even know I had.

For the last couple of years since my departure from “real life,” I have been sailing in the Caribbean, with the majority of the time being spent under the direction of a legendary sailor and shipbuilder, aboard his 70-ft Polynesian voyaging canoe. During this time I was able to gather a sufficient amount of skill and insight in various aspects of sailing, survival, and sustainable living—enough to make me comfortable (or crazy) enough to want to do it on my own. I also learned that I should focus less on others’ depictions of reality and rather immerse myself completely into what has always been: the sun, the sea, the moon, the wind, and the stars.

With this newfound knowledge in my heart, I have spent the last year attempting to achieve a very special goal: the purchase of my very own sailboat. And just last week, my dream came true. I am now the owner of my dream boat, a classic 41-foot 1979 Wharram Narai catamaran. However, my acquisition of the boat came rather unexpectedly, and so now I find myself not totally prepared and with very little time.

The boat is currently located in Panama, and I would like to get it to the East Coast—a grueling trip requiring much preparation. I have a very short weather window in which to complete this, and it happens to be starting right now in April. So here I am now: calling on all of my fellow dreamers, sailors, adventurers, and anyone who might believe in me. I have been attempting to manifest this opportunity for a long time, and I do not want to see it flounder simply because “time is money” and it presented itself at an instance where I have very little of either.

Your donations will go towards:

Registration — getting all ships papers in order before leaving Panama.

Plane tickets & transportation

US Coast Guard inspection prep — there is a long list of requirements for getting into the United States. My boat does not currently have a holding tank for waste, which will need to be built/bought and installed before departing Panama, among other things.

Provisioning — it feels much more comforting going out to sea knowing you have a 6+ month storage of food.

New sails — the boat currently has only one jib, genoa, main, and spinnaker. Each in fair condition. Spare sails on a boat during intense crossings is a must.

New engine — The boat currently has a 9.9 Yamaha outboard, but a spare 4hp outboard gives everyone peace of mind.

Navigation equipment — SPOT, EPIRB, iNavX, OpenCPN, paper charts, radar reflector, etc… simple, yet very important things.

Fuel — engines are no good without fuel. I refuse to motor unless necessary, and though I hope it won’t, the necessity might present itself.

Cruising permits & entering the United States

Haul out — once I arrive in the US, the boat will be ready to be hauled out and given a month in a yard and some love.

Your help with achieving all of these little steps will get me one giant leap closer to my dream of circumnavigating the world, and I will not be able to thank each one of you enough.

I have a website where I record all of my travels. It has been offline for a few months, but should be back up soon. You’ll be able to follow my progress, as well as get in touch with me.


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Kiana Weltzien 
St. Augustine, FL
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