Recognising the vital role and challenges faced by maritime heroes on Sea Sunday

Church congregations across Britain will recognise Sea Sunday on 14 July to raise awareness about the challenges faced by seafarers and to show support for their welfare.

Supporting a charity like the Liverpool Seafarers Centre is crucial because it enables them to continue their vital work in looking after the well-being of crew members who arrive in Liverpool from all over the world.

Seafarers play a crucial role in the global economy, transporting goods and commodities across the seas. However, their work often involves long periods of isolation, physical and mental health challenges, and separation from their families.

Recognising Sea Sunday allows church congregations to acknowledge the sacrifices made by seafarers and to pray for their safety and well-being.

Supporting the Liverpool Seafarers Centre is important because they provide essential services to seafarers visiting the ports of Liverpool. The centre offers practical assistance, emotional support, and a place of respite for seafarers who are far away from home. By supporting this charity, church congregations can ensure that seafarers receive the care and support they need during their time in port. 

The charity recently featured in two thought-provoking BBC Podcasts titled “The Food Chain, Hungry at Sea” and “Corruption in Port,” which shed light on the realities of life on board merchant vessels and the challenges faced by seafarers. (Links at end of article).

John Wilson, Chief Executive of Liverpool Seafarers Centre said, “We have encountered ships in port that face genuine food shortages due to corruption that takes place in other ports often targeting their food supplies.

“Fortunately, thanks to the generous contributions from our local community in Liverpool and beyond, our Ship Welfare visitors are able to get onboard and provide food parcels to ensure that the crew receives the sustenance they require.

“Additionally, small acts of kindness, like offering a simple chocolate bar, can have a profound impact on lifting someone’s spirits and improving their well being. Seafarers are the real unsung heroes of the maritime industry.  Their tireless efforts ensure that the world’s hunger for the latest gadgets, essential goods, and food supplies is satisfied.”

To mark the occasion of Sea Sunday, the Liverpool Seafarers Centre suggest a few ways you can support Seafarers:

1. A special service: Church congregations can organise a dedicated Sea Sunday service, where prayers can be offered for seafarers and their families. This can be an opportunity to raise awareness about the challenges faced by seafarers and the work of organisations like the Liverpool Seafarers Centre.  

2. Fundraising: Church congregations can organise fundraising activities to support the Liverpool Seafarers Centre. This can include collections, or charity drives to gather financial support for the centre’s work.

3. Donations: The centre is continuously seeking donations of winter clothing, tablets or phones to help seafarers stay connected with their families, books for their library, as well as groceries, confectionery and toiletries for Ship Welfare Visitors to distribute on ships when seafarers are unable to come ashore due to limited turnaround time.

4. Volunteer: Individuals can consider volunteering their time and skills at the Liverpool Seafarers Centre. Volunteering can involve assisting with practical tasks such as serving refreshments at the centre, offering companionship, driving the crew minibus, or providing seafarers with local information during their short visit to Liverpool. 

By recognising Sea Sunday and supporting organisations like the Liverpool Seafarers Centre, church congregations and individuals can make a significant impact in improving the welfare of seafarers and showing appreciation for their essential contributions to the global economy.

John Wilson, Chief Executive of Liverpool Seafarers Centre will be attending a special Sea Sunday service on 14 July at St Michaels’ Parish Church, Runcorn, a parish with a very long tradition of support towards the work of The Mission. 

If you would like to find out more about Sea Sunday and this charity, please get in touch with John Wilson, Chief Executive of  Liverpool Seafarers Centre. 

Listen to the BBC Podcasts featuring John Wilson and Kinga Davies of the Liverpool Seafarers Centre:

BBC Podcast: Hungry at Sea – https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/w3ct5xml

BBC Podcast: Corruption at Port – https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/w3ct5zbq

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