Smit Lamnalco, a leading provider of towage and associated marine services to the oil and gas industries, is donating $50,000 this year and again in 2013 to the Flying Angel, the first purpose-built seafarers support vessel in the world.
The Flying Angel sails out to the Fujairah Anchorage each day to take seafarers onboard. It offers internet and telephone facilities, a welfare officer to listen to and help solve seafarers’ problems, book and DVD libraries, a shop and a place to chat, relax and unwind.
At any one time between 150 and 200 vessels crewed by around 3,000 seafarers are at anchorage off the east coast of the United Arab Emirates, the world’s second largest bunker anchorage, and the Flying Angel welcomes an average of 75 seafarers onboard each day.
“Seafarers endure long periods of isolation. They are cut off from family and friends and unable to enjoy shore leave,” said Andrew Brown, Smit Lamnalco Group Business Development Manager. “We are only too happy to help offer them the things that we take for granted. These can help change their lives at sea. Virtually all imports into the United Arab Emirates come by sea so there is a clear need to support the seafarers who are responsible for bringing these in.”
At a presentation ceremony, Vivek Seth, Smit Lamnalco Managing Director, Middle East and Indian subcontinent, said: “Seafarers are the lifeline of any sea borne trade and their wellbeing is imperative. We are glad to be able to contribute to Flying Angel and support such a just cause. ”
Theresa Dommett, on behalf of The Angel Appeal said: “We are delighted to have an established and well-respected partner such as Smit Lamnalco onboard. The Flying Angel costs approximately $1,000 a day to run so we rely on the generosity of sponsors to ensure that the vessel continues to operate smoothly. We are constantly searching for help from other like-minded individuals or organisations.
“Smit Lamnalco’s generosity will obviously go a great way towards meeting the Flying Angel’s operational requirements but also lend further credibility to our cause, and I am confident that this partnership with Smit Lamnalco will be a fulfilling one for all parties involved, especially for the thousands of seafarers that call the waters off Fujairah home.”
The Angel Appeal was established in 2006 and the Flying Angel was built by Albwardy Marine in Al Jadaf in at a cost of $1million and launched in Dubai by HRH Prince Charles in April 2007. Last year the Flying Angel and her six-strong crew, who report to lay Chaplain Geoff Moore, visited more than 1,600 ships and around 25,000 seafarers from those vessels went onboard Flying Angel.