After a successful volunteer program in 2018, two more employees are preparing for a three-month adventure, joining the Mercy Ships hospital ship ‘Africa Mercy’. In addition to fundraising and raising awareness for the humanitarian NGO, Stena Line aims to contribute the unique technical and naval competence held by its employees.
In the next few days two of Stena Line’s able seamen, Martina Thowsen and Alexander Gustafsson, will commence their journey in the Las Palmas ship yard where the hospital ship Africa Mercy is scheduled for maintenance before continuing the journey down to the coast of Senegal. Exactly what their specific tasks will be depends on the ship’s needs at that time, but they are up for the challenge.
“I feel very prepared for what is yet to come and want to thank my colleagues at Stena Line who have shared with me their very valuable experience and knowledge”, says Alexander Gustafsson, able seaman at Stena Nautica, operating the Varberg – Grenaa route.
There are more than 200 different roles required to run the Africa Mercy and even though medical care is an enormous part of it, other professions are needed as well, such as carpenters, mechanics, security officers and chefs to mention just a few. Onboard there will be around 50 different nationalities sharing their knowledge and onboard experiences.
“I am looking forward to meeting people from other cultures and countries, but most of all I am looking forward to contributing to this great cause. Even though I’m not working with the medical care team, on Africa Mercy I will still be a part of helping to improve people’s lives”, says Martina Thowsen, able seaman at Stena Scandinavica, operating the Gothenburg – Kiel route.
The volunteer program is part of Stena Line’s sustainability strategy, which bridges over all three dimensions of sustainability; economical, ecological and social. The program was launched in 2017 and employees from all eight of the shipping company’s regions are encouraged to apply. In accordance with Mercy Ship´s values, all volunteers work for free. However, Stena Line guarantees leave of absence and provides overhead expenses and all necessary vaccinations.
Since 2017, Stena Line is a proud sponsor of the humanitarian organisation Mercy Ships, who sails fully equipped hospital ships operated by volunteers delivering free, life-saving medical care to countries that need it the most. The aim of the partnership is to raise awareness of Mercy Ships, increase the interest in donations among Stena Line’s customers and partners, as well as promote volunteering among employees to share their unique technical and naval competence. Read more www.stenaline.com/mercyships