The International Transport Workers’ Federation Seafarers’ Trust (ITFST) announced on Tuesday that they are organising a photography competition for seafarers. The competition, titled Still at Sea, is open to seafarers who are currently serving and aims to showcase the lives of seafarers out at sea during the pandemic through digital photos. With a top prize of £1000, seafarers are invited to submit their entries on the competition’s website up till the closing date of 30 September 2020. Winners will be announced on the ITFST Facebook page, and there will be plans for a digital and physical exhibition of the entries.
As a result of travel limitations and quarantine restrictions stemming from the pandemic, it is estimated that 300,000 seafarers have been stuck on their vessels, unable to go ashore or return home. The competition therefore aims to highlight the lives of these workers, who have worked tirelessly in order to ensure that the world continues to operate smoothly in these unprecedented times.
The ITFST has hailed the efforts of seafarers around the world who have continued working throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, with David Heindel, Chair of Trustees for ITFST saying, “As Covid-19 has ravaged nations, seafarers have continued working uninterrupted. Many of them have not been ashore for months on end, some for well over a year. A photograph needs no translation to share its story and the Still At Sea competition is a platform for seafarers to show the wider world the realities of life stuck onboard.”
Head of the ITFST, Katie Higginbottom, shared similar sentiments, adding, “At the beginning of the pandemic seafarers were relatively safe at sea but worried for their families. However, months have passed and hundreds of thousands of seafarers are still stuck at sea, their contracts extended well beyond terms that can be considered humane. Still At Sea is a chance for seafarers, hidden but vital global keyworkers, to share a glimpse of their lives to the people who unknowingly rely on them.”
Source: Hellenic Shipping News