There are non-commercial welfare services dedicated to seafarers in around 450 ports worldwide. These are usually run by non-profit organisations for the benefit of visiting seafarers. The following services and directories give information on port welfare services around the world:
SeafarerHelp provides a search facility for seafarers to find services in over 400 ports around the world. Use this or contact SeafarerHelp direct to ask for information or to arrange assistance
Portvisitor is a new service for seafarers starting in late 2020 which provides a directory of services in ports
Shore leave – download this app for details of seafarers’ centres and ship welfare visitors around the world listed by port
Wellness at Sea – download this app for a directory of seafarers’ services and information on living more healthily at sea
Seafarers Centres’ & ITF
ITF Seafarers – covers seafarers’ issues, health, and rights. Also available as an app for smartphone.
ICMA The International Christian Maritime Association ( ICMA ) lists organisations that work with seafarers for their welfare in different countries around the world. It includes the ‘chat to a chaplain’ service. Good for research into services in specific countries for the benefit of seafarers and their families.
Ship arrest, repatriation, unpaid wages
SRI Information on ship arrest
Centre for Seafarers Rights - pamphlets for seafarers covering different flags on ships
ISWAN Arrested and detained vessels, and abandoned seafarers – publication
Repatriation information from ISWAN and SRI
Seafarers Rights International Fact files – on using lawyers, abandonment, maritime liens and ship arrest
Unpaid wages advice from the ITF
Unpaid wages advice from ISWAN
Bullying & harassment
If you face any of these issues and have not successfully dealt with them through your employer, SeafarerHelp is a good place to start to find help and further information, and local assistance. ITF and missions can also be contacted directly for information and support if you have their contact details.
Safety at Sea
Port state control – the links to the different MOUs on PSC (Paris MOU, Tokyo MOU etc.) are on the IMO website . These reports provide details of inspections and contact details of PSC secretariats.
EMSA – Ship Risk Profile Calculator for priority of inspections
Seafarers Health & Wellbeing
Wellness at Sea – living more healthily and other information on port-based services
Seafarers’ Health information Programme – twelve topics covered including mental health, dental, fitness, healthy eating, and managing diet.
Relaxation at Sea – an audio relaxation exercise and controlled breathing exercise
Feeling low? Access to information about sleeping well at sea, stress and mental health
Seafarers affected by piracy
Refugee Rescue Crisis – papers from the ICS to assist seafarers dealing with refugee rescue
Maritime jobs – many different sites exist where jobs in maritime are advertised. This list from Marine Insight in November 2019 lists 36 of them.
Seeking employment – access to approved manning agencies lists for Bangladesh, India, Philippines and Ukraine
The International Chamber of Shipping provides a list of National Careers Contacts in 32 different countries via their member shipowners organisations
ISWAN Relief Funds – small grants funds for seafarers and their families in need