The Seafarers’ Charity has announced that an incredible £10 million has been awarded by the Charity to support the safety and welfare of seafarers over the past three years. An unprecedented period which has seen seafarers’ welfare severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, a war in Ukraine and also the cost of living crisis. As a long term and substantial supporter of seafarers’ welfare, The Seafarers’ Charity has considerably stepped up its financial support for maritime welfare during this extremely difficult period for seafarers and their families.
Most recently in 2022, The Seafarers’ Charity has awarded over £3 million to support maritime welfare and safety for both UK and international seafarers. This £3m package of support is for everyone who works at sea, whether that be in global shipping, international ferries, UK fishing or the professional yacht industry. Highlights include:
Funding the essential work of 61 charities and not for profit organisations to deliver a range of welfare support for seafarers – including practical assistance within port, telephone advice, emotional support and hardship grants.
Supporting working seafarers and those who have retired through services aimed at reducing loneliness and preventing isolation.
Funding initiatives and services throughout the UK from the Isle of Wight to remote Scottish Islands and internationally in the Philippines, India, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates and within African ports too.
Developing and leading several substantial projects to improve safety in the UK fishing fleet.
The substantial impact of the Charity’s funding is documented in a recently released Impact Report.
The Seafarers’ Charity has been committed to supporting seafarers’ safety and welfare for 105 years – ever since it was first established by King George V in 1917. Over the last 10 years alone, The Seafarers’ Charity has pumped an incredible total of £28 million into supporting seafarers’ welfare, with £10m awarded in the most recent 3 years of crisis – demonstrating the increased needs of seafarers at this time. As well as the Charity’s responsiveness and generosity in financially supporting maritime welfare charities to innovate and respond.
Deborah Layde, in her first year as the Chief Executive for The Seafarers’ Charity, summed up her feelings about the Charity’s increased investment in maritime welfare services:
‘I am so proud that our Charity has stepped up over the last three years in response to the various crises that have impacted seafarers. We have worked with both the shipping industry and our delivery partners to raise funds and get funded welfare services in places they were needed most such as India, the Philippines and Ukraine, as well as supporting those impacted by the mass redundancies at P&O Ferries. We have also released additional funds from our reserves to help support our delivery partners to respond to the increased welfare needs of seafarers during this time of crisis.’
‘I recognise the hard work and commitment from each and every member of staff, our trustees and our delivery partners to respond to the needs of seafarers who have really needed additional support over the last three tumultuous years; with the COVID-19 pandemic, natural disasters such as Super Typhoon Rai/Odette in the Philippines, war in Ukraine and now the ever tightening cost of living crisis.
The funded welfare services provided by our delivery partners have been in acute demand and under pressure to innovate and to deliver quickly. I have been impressed at how they have responded to seafarers’ needs during this time of crisis, going above and beyond anything we have ever seen before. The Seafarers’ Charity has supported seafarers for 105 years and we continue to stand ready and committed to supporting seafarers through future challenges – although I’m sure we all hope there are a few less crises in the future.’