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Seafarers Trust in Technology

The ITF Seafarers’ Trust recently re- released an upgraded version of Shore

Leave 2.0, enabling seafarers to access the internet in ports on tablet consoles.

Together with Shore Leave, the Seafar- ers’ Trust believes that these initiatives will effect real change, attending to the global welfare of seafarers.

By Henry Norman

Credit: ITF Seafarers’ Trust n today’s world of ? ber optic broadband, 4G mobile net- Android and iPhone, represents the Seafarers’ Trust’s new and works and app innovation, we have all come to expect the improved design and aims to build upon the existing 10,000

Isuper-fast delivery of our online communications. For sea- downloads. Considered alongside similar charity-sector inno- farers, however, the unique environment of being away at sea vations such as tootoot – an app launched by Bullying UK for many months at a time challenges this norm. Access to a allowing children to report incidences of bullying directly to reliable Wi-Fi connection – both at sea and ashore – for most their place of learning – the app’s new reporting feature en- seafarers is hard to come by. For the ITF Seafarers’ Trust, the abling seafarers to leave reviews of centers visited will play launch of Shore Leave 2.0 aims to ? ll a gap in the provision of a role in helping funding organizations such as the Seafarers’ of? ine apps for seafarers. Trust better identify need and allocate their resources.

App development is a multibillion dollar industry. Just eight

There’s an App for That … years ago Apple’s App store didn’t even exist, which is perhaps

The app, as it was originally conceived, aimed to digitize the all the more staggering considering the fact that by 2017 the

Seafarers’ Centers Directory published by the International industry is estimated to be worth nearly $80 billion. In terms

Seafarers’ Welfare and Assistance Network (ISWAN). Borne of the maritime sector speci? cally, Futurenautics estimates that out of an initial idea by the ITF Seafarers’ Trust Trustees, the the combined worth of shore-based and sea-based communica- inaugural app – launched in 2012 – was designed to assist tions market to be in excess of $3.3 billion per annum. seafarers in looking for reliable port-based transport. Once The Seafarers’ Trust ? rmly believes that third-sector organi- downloaded, seafarers were able to access the contact details zations play an important role in helping realize the power of of seafarers’ centers globally, viewing available facilities as digital technology in terms of welfare provision. Surveys con- well as providing the contact details for Seafarers Help, the ducted by the Trust and other maritime welfare organizations 24/7 helpline available for seafarers in need. The bene? ts of repeatedly reveal seafarers’ current dissatisfaction with the lack an of? ine app were, it seems, readily apparent. After the ? rst of Wi-FI in ports and aboard ships. The results of a compre- download the app was able to function completely of? ine en- hensive survey by Futurenautics research, produced in associa- abling seafarers to call welfare providers relatively easily. tion with Crewtoo, PTC, InterManager, BIMCO and ISWAN,

Shore Leave 2.0, which is available for download on both reveals that 77% of seafarers now take a smartphone aboard. 48 Maritime Professional 1Q 2016I I 34-49 Q1 MP2016.indd 48 2/29/2016 11:15:06 AM

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