The award winning Maritime Charities Welfare Guide

A feature sponsored by the Merchant Navy Welfare Board


Working with a seafarer or their family? Use a new online tool to search for assistance from a maritime charity best placed to assist. The online welfare guide enhances the Seafarer Support service, which acts as the single point of contact for the maritime charity sector in the United Kingdom.

The Maritime Charities Welfare Guide is an interactive, online tool available to anyone searching for assistance from a maritime charity and is hosted on the Seafarer Support website. The intuitive web-based guide offers three ways of searching: ‘quick search’, ‘key words search’ and ‘advanced search’. Using a weighted system, the guide differentiates between organisations and directs users to the charities best suited to help.

Historically, maritime charity details were published in a book that quickly became obsolete. The online guide is an organic document that will evolve alongside the maritime charities and can be updated at any point.

Seafarer Support is funded by the Maritime Charities Funding Group (MCFG), a partnership of seven maritime charities: The Merchant Navy Welfare Board, Seafarers UK, ITF Seafarers Trust, NUMAST Welfare Funds, Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity, Seaman’s Hospital Society and Trinity House. The group are working together to deliver a range of efficient welfare projects across the UK maritime sector.

The much heralded Supporting Seafarers and their Families 2007 research study, commissioned by the Maritime Charities Funding Group, recommended a ‘single’ or ‘common’ point of contact for the maritime charity sector. There are nearly 150 maritime charities providing a wide range of important support services to UK seafarers from the Merchant Navy, Royal Navy & Royal Marines, fishing fleets, and their dependants.

In 2009, Seafarer Support was created to act as the referral service for the entire maritime charity sector. The research found that seafarers are more likely to face poverty, homelessness, bereavement, loneliness, debt and marriage breakdown than other occupational groups and are often unaware that there are charities dedicated to helping them.

Click here to search the guide


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