Ocean of Difference Appeal

Ocean of Difference Appeal


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Your chance to tackle the humanitarian and safety crisis raging at sea

‘Life at sea is tough, the work demanding and the hours long, whatever your trade, but lockdown aboard a berthed ship is an extreme situation that nobody is fully equipped for.' ~ Karlos

As we in the UK can see light at the end of the Coronavirus tunnel, a humanitarian and safety crisis is raging at sea. Seafarers, and in turn their loved ones, are collateral victims of the catastrophe as travel restrictions have left hundreds of thousands of them stranded onboard or unable to join their ships.

As the disaster for seafarers worsens, the emergency need for welfare support continues to grow and your support is more valuable now than ever before. Seafarers face deprivation and disadvantage at the best of times – and now is the worst of times. It is difficult to imagine the levels of fatigue, isolation, anxiety and mental stress with no clear end in sight so many of them are going through.

We hear stories of seafarers who have been at sea for 15, 18, even 21 months continuously. Tragically, we are also aware of many suicides there as hopelessness takes grip.

‘The crew desperately wanted to go home – we were left in a sort of limbo. The fact that we were not even allowed shore leave just intensified the isolation.’ ~ Ioan

‘It is very hard. Twenty-one months at sea. I cannot sleep, I miss my wife, my family, I haven’t met my daughter yet. I am stuck.’ ~ Luka

Despite difficulties with port access, repatriation, crew changes and more, there can be no denying that seafarers have gone beyond the call of duty to keep us supplied with food, goods and medicines throughout the pandemic. We rely on seafarers for 90% of our imports. Right now, they need an emergency lifeline. They need your help.

By supporting our Ocean of Difference Appeal, you can:

  • Help ensure Seafarer Centres remain open, Covid-safe, ready to welcome and provide a safe haven for stressed and exhausted seafarers.
  • Keep Advice and Information helplines running ready to deal with the 300% increase in calls from seafarers desperate for help.
  • Enable digital Befrienders services to run and help seafarers wherever they may be.
  • Fund enormously valuable Ship Visitors and Chaplaincy services, which are especially needed when restrictions force the banning of shore visits.

There is no end in sight for the 200,000 stranded seafarers.

Please give as much as you can to our Ocean of Difference Appeal to help support all our brave, yet exhausted seafarers. Your gift will make the world of difference to seafarers and their families – in the UK and internationally. Thank you. 

Fundraising updates

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