Category Archives: Latest News

The Story of Seafarer Welfare ‘All for us’ Day of the Seafarer

The ‘story of seafarer welfare’ continues to reflect the challenges and response of welfare societies in many situtaions and conditions. Approaching the International Day of the Seafarer 2016 the Apostleship of the Sea reports from Mauritius how real human contact matters as first responders on the ground from our mission societies continue to minister at the real point of need …..

Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) Port Louis chaplain Fr Jacques-Henri David has been visiting the crew of MV Benita who are anxious and distressed following the incident.“The ship drifted towards the southern coast of Mauritius during the night of June 16th and hit Le Bouchon reef in the early morning of June 17th,” said Fr Jacques-Henri.    The ship was on its way from India to Durban, South Africa, and got into trouble after an incident on board.  “Several crew members say they are very traumatised and they all seem genuinely concerned for each other’s welfare,” said Fr Jacques-Henri. “The fourth engineer has been hospitalised and authorities are waiting for him to regain consciousness so he can help with inquiries. He is said to be able to provide vital clues in the case,” he added.

Fr Jacques-Henri said one seafarer was in custody and two others are on board the ship, working with a salvage company.  The captain and the rest of the seafarers are being cared for by the Philippines Consulate, he said.  Fr Jacques-Henri was able to recover some of the crews’ personal belongings such as jackets, sandals and T-shirts from the ship.He is also making arrangements to visit the hospitalised crew member and the seafarer in prison.  “The local shipping agent is negotiating for the seafarers to be paid their salaries promptly,” Fr Jacques-Henri said.

Fr Jaques Henri David, Mauritius
Fr Jaques Henri David, Mauritius

LATEST UPDATE : ICMA Philippines Cultural Immersion Course

filipinoPlaces are filling up for the specialist ICMA course September 24th to October 2nd 2016 in Manila Philippines. So far we have 25 places requested for the course. This cultural immersion course for Port Based Welfare Professionals has limited places for 50 people. It is open to every member organisation of ICMA to send participants.  Please refer to the details and pre-application materials on the appropriate post in this website. We are needing numbers of participants by end of May.

Richard Kilgour. General Secretary. ICMA

 

(Geneva 17th February) ICMA Delegation Advocates for Mariners at ILO

ILO delegation(left) Rev Canon Ken Peters (right) Douglas Stevenson esq.

Douglas Stevenson writes:  ‘as chair of International Christian Maritime Association’s (ICMA) Standing Delegation to the International Labour Organisation (ILO), I, along with vice-chair Rev Canon Ken Peters, represented ICMA at two recent back-to-back meetings.ILO, headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland creates international standards for decent working conditions. Unique among specialized agencies of the United Nations, the ILO includes representatives of trade unions and employers in addition to governments in its deliberations.

Seafarers’ welfare is a high priority item on the ILO maritime sector’s agenda. Because organizations connected to ICMA provide almost all seafarers’ services worldwide, the organization has—since its founding in 1969—played a prominent role as a non-governmental organization in ILO deliberations.

Meeting of the Maritime Labour Convention Special Tripartite Committee (STC)  The Special Tripartite Committee (STC) considered proposals to amend the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 (MLC, 2006) that would …

  1. Require shipowners to pay seafarers’ wages while held captive by pirates
  2. Address shipboard harassment and bullying
  3. Extend the validity of MLC, 2006 inspection certificates in certain circumstances

ICMA strongly supported the principle of paying wages to seafarers while held captive by pirates, as did all virtually all other STC participants. The STC got bogged down, however, on agreeing to technical language acceptable to all. The STC created a tripartite working committee to prepare proposals, including amending the MLC, 2006 to address the issues related to protecting seafarers’ wages when held captive by acts of piracy and armed robbery. The working group is to present proposals to the STC before its next meeting.
The STC adopted a recommendation to amend the MLC, 2006 by including bullying and harassment in guidelines for health and safety protection. The STC also adopted a recommendation to amend the MLC, 2006 by allowing extensions of inspection certificates for up to five months in certain circumstances.

Ad Hoc Tripartite Maritime Committee for the Seafarers’ Identity Documents Convention     At the conclusion of the STC, the Ad Hoc Tripartite Maritime Committee for the Seafarers’ Identity Documents Convention convened to update the technical requirements for Seafarers’ Identity Documents issued under the Seafarers’ Identity Document Convention (ILO-185). The technology for biometric identification documents that existed when ILO-185 was adopted in 2003 is now obsolete, and card readers for that technology are no longer commercially available. The committee agreed to amend the annex to ILO-185 by adopting modern standards used in the aviation industry. While discussions around biometric standards were considered, it was heartening to hear statements by governments, unions and shipowners on the importance of ILO-185 in promoting seafarers’ shore leave access. The committee adopted a resolution on facilitating seafarers’ access to shore leave.

Ken and I briefed committee participants of seafarers’ shore leave issues observed by port chaplains, and we presented an introductory statement on behalf of ICMA during the committee’s plenary meeting.

Read the Statement to the Ad Hoc Tripartite Maritime Committee for the Seafarers’ Identity Documents Convention (Revised), 2003 (No. 185) here.

by Douglas B. Stevenson, Esq., Chairman of ICMA ILO delegation.

ENDS

CONTINUITY OF CARE emerges as a major theme.

The 2015 Annual General Meeting of ICMA and Executive Committee (pictured together above) were welcomed at Montreal this last week. Members of ICMA from many parts of the world joined us this year as The North American Maritime Ministry Association were meeting also. The programme of this years’ NAMMA Conference 2015 emphasised many aspects of the real need for continuity in delivery of care to seafarers and their families. Richard Kilgour General Secretary of ICMA commented that “a ‘highlight’ of the 3 day program was the presentation by Marissa Oca of the work being done with the families of seafarers in the Philippines. That work with a reading program (known as ‘Read Aloud’) for children shows how much can be done to reinforce the bonds between parent and child (at home and those away at sea) using a special reading program”. That program has developed from the ‘Gig and the Amazing Sampaguita Foundation, Inc.’ with its vision to help promote well-bonded relationships among and within seafarer and OFW families (Overseas Filipino Workers) through reading habits.  Other aspects of care were highlighted including stories shared by chaplains working in North America.  During the conference the funding agencies and major sponsors; The Seafarers Trust, TK Foundation and Seafarers’ UK shared the input on programs and support for seafarer welfare.

Richard Kilgour. Oct. 4th Montreal

New Lounge for Cruise Ship Crews : Hamburg Steinwerder: Neue Lounge für die Kreuzfahrer-Crew

ICMA welcomes the continuing success of The German Seamen’s Mission in Seafarer Welfare for Crews in the Cruise Industry. ICMA General Secretary; Rev Richard Kilgour comments – ‘the fast expanding cruise industry sector means that the welfare needs of seafarers from ‘cruise ships’ require special attention. This work in Hamburg shows what is possible when mission societies, shipowners, welfare organisations, volunteers and others collaborate together in this way for seafarer ‘shore based welfare provision’.

The German Seaman’s Mission reports at their website: that the Seafarer’s Lounge for the Hamburg Steinwerder Cruise Terminal was opened on Friday 18th September. The ‘lounge’ provides access to phone or Skype communications for seafarers to contact families. A store with sweets and toiletries is also available. Personal counselling support is another aspect of the service for seafarers.
Jürgen Bollmann the President of the German Seamen’s Mission, and former Provost of Hamburg said ‘the Seafarer’s Lounge offers the sailors a “temporary home”.

Hamburg_Cruise_Center_Steinwerder_11

In 2014; 189 cruise ships with 600,000 passengers visited Hamburg. With ‘HafenCity’ and Altona , the Steinwerder is the third lounge to be established in Hamburg. In the same year altogether at HafenCity and Altona 15,000 crewmembers used the lounges.

These new developments meet a real need for seafarers today; who have limited time to come ashore, or to get out of the harbour. This work is funded by voluntary donations from ship owners, and organised by the German Seaman’s Mission. Volunteer support is also provided through the Federal Voluntary Service

Am Hamburger Kreuzfahrtterminal Steinwerder ist am Freitag(9.18.15) die Seafarer’s Lounge eröffnet worden. Hier können die Seeleute der Kreuzfahrtschiffe über Handy oder Skype Kontakt mit ihren Familien aufnehmen. Dazu werden Süßigkeiten und Hygieneartikel angeboten. Darüber hinaus stehen Seelsorger für persönliche Gespräche bereit.

Die Seafarer’s Lounge biete den Seeleuten “eine Heimat auf Zeit”, sagte der Präsident der Deutschen Seemannsmission, der ehemaligen Hamburg Propst Jürgen Bollmann. Nach der Hafencity und Altona ist die Lounge in Steinwerder die dritte in Hamburg.

Die neue Seafarer’s Lounge befindet sich direkt im neuen Terminal Steinwerder inmitten des ehemaligen Freihafens. Hintergrund für die Einrichtung ist, dass die Seeleute heute kaum noch Zeit haben, aus dem Hamburg Hafen herauszukommen. 189 Kreuzfahrtschiffe mit rund 600.000 Passagieren kamen 2014 nach Hamburg.

Träger der Lounge ist die Seemannsmission Hamburg-Harburg, die auch den Seemannsclub “Duckdalben” unterhält. Zwei feste Kräfte und zwei Bufdis (Bundesfreiwilligendienst) arbeiten hier gemeinsam mit einer Gruppe von Ehrenamtlichen. Die Finanzierung erfolgt über die freiwillige Schiffsabgabe der Reeder. 2014 wurden in den bereits bestehenden Lounges in der Hafencity und in Altona rund 15.000 Crewmitglieder betreut.

Quelle (auch Foto): kirche-hamburg.de

Source (including photo): kirche-hamburg.de

This report is shared from ICMA member The German Seamen’s Mission – Deutsche Seemannsmission.

The Journey to Montreal 2015…..

The momentum is building this month for the gathering with ICMA and NAMMA at Montreal September 29th-October 2nd 2015.

MONTREAL
MONTREAL

As the General Secretary opened the proceedings of the recent ICMA Executive Committee meeting in August we committed our work together at Montreal in prayer :  “. . . .let us pray for our time in this meeting and for all the preparations for our Montreal gathering, for the spirit of adventure, discovery and for safe passage and arrival, for success in all we do in the name of International Christian Maritime Association, and especially for the work of those who serve in ports to meet seafarers, and for all at sea in ships in all kinds of conditions, for their wellbeing, their safety, and their families. In Christ’s name.  AMEN

Dr Jason Zuidema Executive Director of NAMMA reports that a hundred people have registered so far for the event, and ICMA will be welcoming some 12 of their 28 member organizations to be represented at the ICMA Annual Meeting Thursday October 1st at 15:00 hrs. at the Conference Venue ; Hotel Zero 1, 1 René-Lévesque Est (East) Montreal, Quebec, H2X 3Z5

ICMA members’ representation 2015:

– Apostleship of the Sea
– Christian Seamen’s Organisation
– Deutsche Seemannsmission
– Mission to Seafarers
– NAMMA
– Nederlandse Zeemanscentrale
– Seemannsmission der Nordkirche
– PCT Seamen’s/Fishermen’s Service Center Taiwan
– Sailors’ Society
– Seamen’s Church Institute of New York & New Jersey
– Stichting Pastoraat Werkers Overzee
– Suomen Merimieskirkko

The meeting will bring many partners in seafarers welfare together with us to share the programme for the week. Significant topics of concern are discussed and our networks are reinforced for the wellbeing of seafarers worldwide. Our partners and contributors here include Seafarers UK, Merchant Navy Welfare Board, ISWAN, ITF Seafarers’ Trust, ITF/SIU, Lutheran Advocates for Maritime Mission, Port Ministries International, AOS-USA and more.

NOTE TO ICMA MEMBERS AND REPRESENTATIVES : Papers and Agenda/Reports for the Annual General Meeting have been emailed already to organizations. This year we are offering for those unable to travel to Montreal to join us on Thursday 1st October by video-conference link.  If an organization can provide representation and want link information; then members are asked to email the General Secretary gensec@icma.as  in advance and we can send details as soon as they are available.

Richard Kilgour. General Secretary

MPHRP to continue Humanitarian Response

Maritime Piracy logoICMA welcomes the continuing commitment of all concerned in organising for the humanitarian response to the impact of piracy around the oceans of the world. From August 4th. in the UK – the boards of the International Seafarers Welfare and Assistance Network (ISWAN) and the Maritime Piracy Humanitarian Response Programme (MPHRP) are pleased to announce the moving of the activities of the MPHRP into ISWAN. A transfer agreement was signed by both parties on 3 August 2015. ISWAN will now be responsible for all the activities of the highly respected MPHRP.iswan

In the PRESS RELEASE this week  Roger Harris of ISWAN said ‘The move to ISWAN will enable the programme to develop under the auspices of a well-established international seafarers’ welfare organisation that is registered as a charity’.

ISWAN told us this week that ‘the programme will continue to support the seafarers and their families who are affected by piracy. While piracy attacks off the coast of Somalia have significantly decreased, attacks are on the increase in South East Asia and continuing in the Gulf of Guinea. The MPHRP programme will concentrate on these areas while still supporting seafarers who were held for years in Somalia. The programme will seek to develop constructive and positive relationships with existing and new industry partners.’

ISWAN has already appointed a new programme manager, Mr Tom Holmer, to lead the MPHRP in this new phase of its development. The programme in South Asia will continue while an immediate priority will be to secure funding to continue the programme in South East Asia and Eastern Europe.

Richard Kilgour: ICMA General Secretary said ‘the need for the humanitarian response to piracy is as vital as ever. We welcome this development in securing a base for MPHRP to continue to build upon this important work’.

Winners of the 2015 International Seafarers’ Welfare Awards Announced

The winners of the 2015 International Seafarers’ Welfare Awards were announced on Tuesday 9th June during a high profile ceremony hosted by Secretary General of the International Maritime Organization, Mr Koji Sekimizu at the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in London.

Screen Shot 2015-06-11 at 12.22.17 PM (2)

The winners are:
• Judges Special Award : Rev’d Ken Peters, Mission to Seafarers Director of Justice and Public Affairs
• Judges’ Posthumous Award: Mr Paul Karras, founder of Hunterlink Recovery Services
• Shipping Company of the Year: Eidesvik
• Port of the Year: Port of Halifax, Canada
• Seafarer Centre of the Year: Seafarers’ Centre Bremerhaven
• Dr Dierk Lindemann Welfare Personality of the Year Award (organisation): National Union of Seafarers of India
• Dr Dierk Lindemann Welfare Personality of the Year Award (individual): Chirag Bahri (MPHRP)

The Welfare Personality of the Year Award is named after Dr Dierk Lindemann who sadly passed away on 17 March 2014. Dr Lindemann served as the Shipowner’s Group spokesperson at the ILO and took a lead role in getting the Maritime Labour Convention adopted.

Congratulations to all winners and nominees!

For more information and photos, check out the ISWAN website.

AGM & Consultative Forum Dates Announced

The 2014 Annual General Meeting and Consultative Forum will be held in Copenhagen Denmark. The dates are 19-20 September 2014. Participants will have opportunity to tour the Maritime Museum of Denmark in Helsingor, where the AGM meeting will be held. A Preliminary Schedule will begin at 1000 on 18 September with the Executive Committee meeting. AGM members are asked to arrive for lunch on 19 September. The AGM meeting will be held 20 September a the Maritime Museum. Registration information and materials are being sent to existing member contacts. Email secretariat@icma.as if you need more information.

Stuart Rivers takes office at Sailors Society

The Sailors’ Society’s new Chief Executive Officer has assumed the role at the Society’s Southampton office in the United Kingdom on April 1st 2013.  Stuart R Rivers succeeds Robert N Adams in the role.

In a letter announcing his appointment, the Sailors’ Society wrote that Rivers has extensive experience in the international mobile communications sector, having been Strategic, and later Global, Business Director of Ericsson.

In 2002 Rivers left the communications industry and entered into full time Christian ministry for the Salvation Army.  He has since worked for BP, was Executiive Director of Enterprise at the Bible Society, has worked with the International Social Justice Commission and has contributed to Theos, the ecumenical public advocacy “think tank”.

Rivers holds post-graduate diplomas in Theology and in Marketing.

Ross Sinclair, Chair of the trustees of Sailors’ Society, said:

 

“Stuart posseses a most unusual blend of skills and business experience spanning commercial management, technology and charity fundraising fused with a deep practical understanding of ministry, social justice and pastoral welfare.”

 

The International Christian Maritime Association congratulates Stuart Rivers upon assuming the role of Chief Executive Officer at this valued founder member of our Association.  ICMA looks forward to continuing its close collaboration with the Sailors’ Society and its Chief Executive Officer who has in the recent past also assumed the role of ICMA’s Treasurer.

Initially, up to and including ICMA’s Annual Genreral Meeting in Bucharest later this year, Robert Adams will continue to represent the Sailors Society on ICMA’s Executive Committee.  Robert has a crucial role in ICMA’s strategic review and has elected to assist the Association to conclude the process before he retires from ICMA.  Sailors Society’s commitment to ICMA is highly appreciated by the membership.