Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Fancy a Job Aboard a Container Ship, a RoRo Ferry or a Destroyer?

Seafarers Awareness Week May be For You
Shipping News Feature

UK – 20 to 28 June 2015 has been designated Seafarers Awareness Week and this year the theme is to be ‘Opportunities to Work at Sea’ with the intention of informing young people of the opportunities of a job in the Merchant service aboard anything from a container ship to a freight ferry or cruise liner, or indeed with the Royal Navy. The idea is to promote the relevant education, training and recruitment services that can lead to maritime employment.

Co-ordinated by Seafarers UK, a major grant-making charity that supports the maritime community, Seafarers Awareness Week will promote the vital role seafarers play in the UK and global economies, an industry employing 1.5 million seafarers worldwide, of which over 70,000 are from the UK. The event coincides with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) Day of the Seafarer (25 June) and complements the IMO’s World Maritime Day (24 September), both themselves focusing on maritime education and working at sea.

Seafarers Awareness Week will involve maritime industry associations, employers, training providers and recruitment organisations, combining many activities and media opportunities, raising the profile of seafaring and maritime jobs to a wide audience, in particular young people, parents and educators. Nick Harvey, Campaigns Manager at Seafarers UK, said of the event:

“We are delighted to co-ordinate our theme alongside the IMO and look forward to another highly successful Seafarers Awareness Week. With so many opportunities, including in growth areas such as cruise ships, superyachts and renewable energy developments, it is paramount we ensure that the next generation views working at sea as a viable and exciting career option too.”

Latest partner for the Seafarers Awareness Week is the Maritime Skills Alliance (MSA) whose 16 members, include the Royal Navy, Port Skills and Safety, Merchant Navy Training Board and the Royal Yachting Association. The MSA creates qualifications and apprenticeships for the many facets of maritime workers in the UK and Bill Walworth, Chairman of the MSA commented:

“The maritime industry these days is about high-tech equipment on sophisticated vessels, but Seafarers Awareness Week is our annual reminder that none of that counts for anything without the skills, training and commitment of the seafarer. In the Maritime Skills Alliance we do our bit to support seafarers, wherever in the wider maritime sector they work, by creating flexible qualifications and apprenticeships. We're natural allies for Seafarers Awareness Week and delighted to give the campaign our enthusiastic support.”

Seafarers UK has thus far assembled eight partners ranging from the Sea Cadets to Nautilus International, the maritime professionals union. A full list of partners can be seen here, with links to each organisation explaining how each can play its part in the education and support for budding seafarers.