On November 15-16 the International Seafarers’ Welfare and Assistance Network (ISWAN) will hold its annual conference in Rotterdam.
Seafaring is by its very nature an isolated profession. For crew, connecting with those around them is vital for combatting isolation and loneliness. ISWAN’s Social Interaction Matters (SIM) Project was launched in April 2020 to help shipping and ship management companies improve social interaction on board their vessels to boost crew wellbeing.
Impacts, barriers and drivers of social interaction
Between November 2020 and September 2021, with the pervasive backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, ISWAN conducted research into the impacts, barriers and drivers of social interaction in the form of live trials on board several vessels. The final Phase Two report was recently published , sharing key findings along with guidance and recommendations for companies invested in improving the welfare and wellbeing of their crews.
The last in-person AGM and Seminar took place in Mumbai in 2019 and focused on how those in the maritime industry could work together for seafarers’ mental wellbeing. Three years on, they want to take a penetrating look at what has been learned since then, what issues seafarers are facing now, and how to further develop and effectively implement the SIM Project’s guidance and recommendations for the future – in ways that are also inclusive for other areas of the maritime sector, including cruise ships and superyachts.
The International Seafarers’ Welfare and Assistance Network (ISWAN) is an international maritime charity which works to improve the lives of seafarers and their families with services, resources, strategies and advocacy.
Photo credit: Iris van den Broek