Seafarers in the spotlight
TODAY is International Day of the Seafarer and here in Gladstone, Mission to Seafarers held a service and morning tea to recognise all the hard work seafarers do.
Manager Jess Mulhall said today was important to recognise seafarers and their contribution to our daily lives.
"A lot of people don't realise that when you look around your houses and your work places, 90 per cent of what you've got there came on a ship,” she said.
Ms Mulhall said often the job required seafarers to be away from their families for months at a time.
"It's hard work, it's long, tiring hours that they do, it's a sacrifice that they make to do this job and we want to recognise that,” Ms Mulhall said.
This year's campaign for the annual Day of the Seafarer was "I am on Board”, placing an emphasis on the importance and value of women in the professional ranks.
Ms Mulhall said last year they had three female seafarers come through.
"We are now starting to see more and more female seafarers - they've still got a long way to go, it's a heavily male-dominated industry,” she said.
"That's something we are definitely moving forward for.”
Ms Mulhall said today was the first time they had opened up the service and morning tea to the public to celebrate International Day of the Seafarer.
She was thankful that Father Kevin from Star of the Sea Catholic Church came down to do the service.
She said she was happy with the turnout and the team was working hard to open the seafarers centre up to the general public.
"We are here for anyone that is a person of the sea,” Ms Mulhall said.
"Gladstone is a port city - we ship a lot of product and if we didn't have the port, we wouldn't have the town.
"Each time that it booms, the reason it does that is because of the port and the seafarers that are here.”