Prince Rupert Seafarers’ volunteers join crew from visiting vessels to celebrate the International Day of the Seafarer.

Port donation marks International Day of Seafarer

In recognition of the work done by Prince Rupert Lighthouse Ministries, the PRPA donated $5,000 on the International Day of the Seafarer.

In recognition of the work done by Prince Rupert Lighthouse Ministries, the Prince Rupert Port Authority (PRPA) donated $5,000 to help the group run its Seafarers’ Mission Centre on the fourth annual International Day of the Seafarer.

Since the Prince Rupert Seafarers’ Mission Centre opened its doors about two and a half years ago, about 7,300 seafarers have stopped by, utilizing the centre’s computers, Wi-Fi, telephones with free international calling, games and more.

“These seamen have been away from home for a long, long time. To have a place where they can come and feel at home. The important thing for them is to be able to contact their families,” Norm Craddock, chairman of the Lighthouse Harbour Ministries, said.

Capt. Dimitrias Gkinis and his crew from the Greece-owned “Efi Theo” bulk carrier stopped by the centre for the cheque presentation. The vessel came from Korea, to load grain before heading to customers in India.

Vincent Joseph Redobzado and Berdin Frederico, two of the vessel’s workers from the Philippines, said the hardest part of working out at sea is being away from family, so the centre is much appreciated.

“It’s very good because we can communicate with our families. We’ve missed them very much. We are thankful for this operation to help seafarers communicate with their families in the Philippines,” said Redobado.

“This place is very convenient, and all of the people are good.”

Bernie Egan, captain of the PRPA Charles Hays patrol vessel, said the port is proud to support the volunteer group’s selfless service.

“Through our work at the terminals and on the water, we meet seafarers from around the world. Their work involves long periods of isolation while at sea, so Prince Rupert’s Seafarers’ Centre is a welcome beacon for those visiting our city. Its volunteers have demonstrated hospitality and care to literally thousands of oceangoing men and women,” said Egan.