TasPorts supports Mission to Seafarers

TasPorts has recently finalised and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Mission to Seafarers (MTS) in Hobart.


07 November 2022

The MOU formalises TasPorts’ working relationship with the Hobart chapter and further strengthens operational support for the charity, recognising our mutual interest and shared commitment to provide seafarer welfare services in Hobart through the shore-based seafarer welfare facility.

Additionally, this MOU establishes the support framework to assist, encourage and promote the delivery and improvement of seafarer welfare services by The Mission in conjunction with TasPorts. TasPorts supports the Mission’s goals through financial and in-kind support, as well as promotion of their services to all visiting vessels.

Ongoing work is taking place to finalise MOUs with other chapters at our primary ports of Devonport, Burnie, and Bell Bay.

As operators of eleven ports across Tasmania, TasPorts plays an important role in supporting the seafarers that visit our multi-port system and works closely with the Mission to Seafarers.

Mission to Seafarers Logo

Seafarers are vital to international trade.

Since 2020, seafarers have been on the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic, playing an essential role in supporting our global economy and prosperity by maintaining the flow of vital goods, such as food, medicines and medical supplies. Seafarers, however, face unique challenges. COVID-19 restrictions on port access globally placed seafarers under enormous pressure and led to increased rates of loneliness, ill health, injury, and even exploitation.

Thomas’ Story below highlights the important role the Mission to Seafarers provides in connecting and supporting international crews at our ports.

Thomas' Story

In August 2021, a seafarer was seriously injured by a mooring rope he was releasing at the Port of Devonport. This incident resulted in severe lacerations to his face and body and a concussion.

Following the accident, the injured seafarer, Thomas, was assisted by TasPorts and Qube staff, who used a forklift to lower a gurney onto the wharf while waiting for an ambulance, which then transferred him to Launceston General Hospital (LGH).

Due to the COVID-19 restrictions at the time, Thomas, who is from Myanmar and speaks almost no English, was placed in an isolation ward for nearly a week, during which his vessel departed for Adelaide.

Through communications between the MtS and the shipping agent, support was found for Thomas within the local Burmese (Myanmar) community. During the following days, thoughtful gifts were delivered to the isolation ward and calls were made by all involved to check on Thomas’ welfare - demonstrating to Thomas and the hospital staff that he was cared about.

Once hospital care was no longer required, Thomas moved to an isolation hotel in Devonport to recuperate further.

During this period, the shipping agent worked hard to negotiate with the shipping company to return Thomas to his home in Myanmar. This was agreed to and flights were arranged after three weeks in Tasmania.

This is just one of a number of partnerships TasPorts has with organisations dedicated to Tasmania’s maritime industry. You can read more about the great work we do at TasPorts Community Engagement and Partnerships.

You can donate to the Mission to Seafarers online, and donations go directly towards the work of The Australian Council of the Mission to Seafarers Inc and are used to expand their reach to seafarers and provide assistance to new centres opening around the country.

If you wish to donate directly to the Hobart chapter, please contact them at hobart@mts.org.au.