Our work

ISWAN Regional Programme

Our Regional Programme provides humanitarian support to seafarers and their families in three specific regions: South East Asia, South Asia and Nigeria.

Seafarers taken hostage have a major worry about what becomes of their families while they face months or years of captivity. Our Regional Programme was developed in response to the needs of seafarers facing the crisis of being taken hostage by pirates and the families left behind. We provided emotional and practical support, training in crisis response, and guidelines for the treatment of seafarers and their families.

To be situated in the areas of greatest need, the programme developed a presence in the Philippines (home to more seafarers than anywhere else in the world), India/South Asia and Nigeria. Our trained responders operate with a network of volunteers and through other seafarers’ welfare agencies to reach scattered families with assistance. As Somali piracy reduced in size and scope, our Regional Programme moved towards the wider effects of crises – deaths, injuries, illness, imprisonment – among seafarers and their families, where we are able to bring practical and emotional support in times of need.

You can read about some of the seafarers and families of seafarers helped by our Regional Representatives below.

Regional Stories

  • Stressed seafarer supported by SeafarerHelp

    Seafarers spend long periods away from their support networks back home, so when a seafarer is feeling low or experiencing worries, it can be isolating if there is no-one to talk to on board. Our SeafarerHelp team is here to listen to any seafarer feeling depressed, lonely or unhappy.

  • Abandoned, unpaid crew supported through ISWAN’s Regional Programme

    When seven Bangladeshi seafarers were forcefully removed from their vessel and abandoned without pay, our Regional Representative in Nigeria was there to assist and support them.

Related Projects

Other projects

Seafarerhelp Stacked Rgb 20181023 2


A free, 24-hour, multilingual helpline for seafarers and their families

Naham 3 Hostages And Plane In Somalia Edited


We offer support to seafarers and their families affected by maritime piracy

Seafarers Mental Health And Wellbeing

Seafarers' Mental Health and Wellbeing

A free training package suitable for both individual viewing by all crew and training sessions onboard and ashore

Helsinki Seminar

ISWAN Seminar 2018

Improving the wellbeing of seafarers: Working in partnership, seeking practical solutions (23 November, Helsinki)

Istock 524710540

Superyacht Crew Welfare

We will launch the results of our survey of superyacht crew in London on 3rd December 2018

Web Edited 2258 Joy Corthésy for ISWAN

International Seafarers' Welfare Awards

Recognising excellence in seafarers’ welfare provision across the shipping industry

Mikhail Chulanov Wilson Garston 01 Mikhail Chulanov

Seafarers' Health Information Programme (SHIP)

We provide shipping companies and seafarers with information on staying healthy on board

Port 2

International Port Welfare Partnership (IPWP) Programme

A project aiming to encourage and support the establishment of welfare boards worldwide

Kalli Pavan 1 Kalli Pavan

Indian Seafarers Campaign

Discouraging Indian seafarers from signing up with unregistered crewing agencies

Drinking Water 7

Quench Hydration Campaign

Providing seafarers with the right tools and information to keep hydrated on board

Women Seafarers Health And Welfare Survey

Women Seafarers' Health and Welfare Survey

A joint initiative looking at the health of women seafarers and where it can be improved

Albert Garayev 2 Albert Garayev

Training on Board

A free and motivational training, nutrition and health programme for seafarers

Day Of The Seafarer 2018 Photography Competition Main Photo

Day of the Seafarer 2018 Photo Competition

Promoting the theme of 'Seafarers' Wellbeing' in partnership with the IMO