When MTS Chaplain John Kewa, who works pretty much solo at the Mission to Seafarers Port Kembla, urgently needed a new minibus after an accident, the local port community responded fast – they donated almost $80,000 in only 10 days!
Port Authority of New South Wales, Head of Regional Ports and Chair of The Port Welfare Committee of Port Kembla, Peter Ernst brough the community together promptly so that the visiting seafarers could continue to enjoy this free service they are always so thankful for.
The Port Kembla port community attended a special celebration on October 6 to present the gift of the new 12-seater minibus to The Mission to Seafarers Port Kembla to support their invaluable welfare work with visiting seafarers.
Federal Member for Cunningham Alison Byrnes MP handed over the keys to Chaplain John, and acknowledged the incredible support from the local port businesses and community and how valuable the service was to visiting seafarers.
Chaplain John thanked everyone who contributed which included Australian Amalgamated Terminals, NSW Ports, BlueScope Port Kembla, Squadron Energy, Port Kembla Coal Terminal, Port Kembla Gateway, Park Fuels and almost all the Ship Agents operating out of Port Kembla (Monson, GAC Shipping, Asia World, Wilhelmsen and CSL Shipping). He said the insurance only provided $10,000 for the old bus, so he was extremely grateful to everyone who helped to replace it so fast with a bus that will be much more reliable and comfortable for both the seafarers and drivers.
The Port Authority, announcing the gift on LinkedIn, said: “Life as a seafarer can often be very challenging, at sea for many months at a time, away from family and friends. The new bus will enable the continuation of the pick-up and drop off bus service to get visiting seafarers quickly to services and facilities they need 365 days per year. This may be their only opportunity to replenish their basic essential items through a visit to a grocery store or access medical specialists like dentists and doctors before taking to the ocean again.”
Share the good news at: https://www.linkedin.com/posts/mission-to-seafarers-sydney_missiontoseafarers-seafarerwelfare-workingonthewater-activity-7116943386548305920-gb1V?utm_source=share&utm_medium=member_desktop