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Connecting Crew

From 29 June to 10 July 2020, we held a two-week digital campaign to highlight the importance of connecting with others for crew wellbeing.

The maritime industry is well aware of the challenges that generations of seafarers have faced working at sea and the sacrifices that they continue to make. Further obstacles created by the COVID-19 pandemic have been hard-hitting and have meant that seafarers – who are used to spending many months away from home – are now facing a great deal of uncertainty about their employment and when they will be able to see their loved ones. It is vital now more than ever that seafarers have all of the available opportunities and support in strengthening relationships on board, especially for those crew that have no option other than to remain on board.

Our two-week campaign, supported by the International Chamber of Shipping and the International Transport Workers’ Federation, was themed around Connecting Crew. The campaign aimed to emphasise the importance of connecting with others for our wellbeing, particularly during the current COVID-19 pandemic where shore leave if not possible and crew changes are delayed by months.

The first week of the campaign was aimed at shipping companies, helping them to identify barriers to socialising on their ships and providing ideas to facilitate stronger relationships and connections on board. The second week aimed to sparked ideas for crew members on how to strengthen relationships with those both on board and at home. The campaign was mainly focused on our social media platforms – Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn – using the hashtag #ConnectingCrew.

The campaign coincided with our ongoing Social Interaction Matters (SIM) Project, which aims to help shipping and ship management companies improve seafarers’ social interaction on board using programmes with proven success, in order to positively impact the wellbeing of their crews. We recently conducted a survey to investigate the barriers and drivers of social interaction on board and we held a webinar on 9 July to discuss some of the preliminary findings.

Campaign resources:

NEWS: ISWAN launches campaign to strengthen crew relationships during current crisis (29/6/20)

ARTICLE: Why are relationships with others important for our wellbeing? (30/6/20)

INFOGRAPHIC: Facilitating strong relationships on board (1/7/20)

INFOGRAPHIC: What prevents social interaction on board? (2/7/20)

VIDEO: Connecting Crew - Interview with Consultant Clinical Psychologist Dr. Pennie Blackburn (3/7/20)

INFOGRAPHIC: Working well together on board (6/7/20)

ARTICLE: Socialising at sea (7/7/20)

INFOGRAPHIC: Strengthening relationships at home (8/7/20)

POSTERS: Psychological First Aid and Coping with stress during COVID-19 (9/7/20)

ARTICLE: Connecting Crew to boost wellbeing (10/7/20)

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We are grateful to our main funders for their continued support: