Opinion Former Video

Helping people in the maritime community

2017 is Seafarers UK’s centenary year. The charity provides grants to projects across the Merchant Navy, fishing fleets, and Royal Navy. Helping people in areas such as advice, housing, care, health, education and youth welfare.

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Seafarers UK is a charity that helps people in the maritime community, by providing vital funding to support seafarers in need, and their families.

It was established in 1917, by a group of far-sighted people who wanted to help the thousands of seafarers injured or lost at sea, and their families, during WW1.

The charity became know as King George’s fund for sailors after King George V took an interest and provided an establishing donation. In 1920 it had gained Royal Charter Status and the importance of the charity was amplified when WW2 began. With many more thousands of British men killed or injured during the Battle of the Atlantic.

The charity's mission was to fundraise and effectively channel monies to organisations that were delivering welfare services to those seafarers in greatest need.

And that mission remains the same today.

Seafarers UK provides hundreds of grants to hundreds of projects each year across the Merchant Navy, fishing fleets, and Royal Navy. Helping people in areas such as advice, housing, care, health, education and youth welfare. A key aspect of its work is supporting young people in maritime youth organisations, training for a potential career at sea.

The charity also campaigns to raise awareness of the importance of the sea, the role of the seafarer, and opportunities to work in maritime.

Those who make a living at sea, are at constant risk of injury, disability or even death due the dangerous nature of their work. Being away for long periods, some might suffer from loneliness or depression, or struggle to manage their relationship or finances. 

2017 is Seafarers UK’s centenary year. A time for the charity to reflect the sacrifices of previous generations, demonstrate support for that of the present, and encourage those of the future.

To mark this milestone the charity is fundraising for three key projects, under it’s centenary theme of Supporting Seafarers: Past, Present and Future.

In 'Supporting the Past' - a new 'Seafarers UK Centenary Wing' of the Mariners Park retirement complex in Wallasey which is being built for elderly seafarers and their dependents. This will provide 22 new apartments with 24 hour care support. Seafarers UK has committed substantial funds towards the building, and is now seeking further donations toward the overall cost.

In 'Supporting the Present' - Seafarers UK is fundraising for The International Port Welfare Partnership. This is a major international project to encourage the set-up of ‘Welfare Boards’ - designed to help local maritime communities ensure the wellbeing of seafarers is supported when they come into port.

In 'Supporting the Future' - The charity is seeking donations towards the purchase of six marine engineering mobile units, each with specialist engineering equipment and learning materials, and supported by trained instructors. These will be used as part of a wider project to enable thousands of young people across the UK to access taster sessions, workshops and qualifications in marine engineering.

As an island nation we remain reliant on our seafarers to defend us, feed us and supply us with 95% of the things we take for granted.

The challenges faced by those working at sea, and those organisations that help them, are changing all the time, but the support Seafarers UK provides to them remains constant.

2017 is a very special year for Seafarers UK, so why not make it the year you do something special too, and help us to do more to support seafarers in need.

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