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17 Jul 2023
3 mins
Celebrating Day of the Seafarer at YSMOU BBQ Networking

Good food brings people together. Even more so when good food is grilled over the barbeque (BBQ)!

In conjunction with the Day of the Seafarer which falls on every 25 June, a BBQ Get-together, organised by Young SMOU on 23 June, brought together 30 young seafarers for a time of connecting over hot grill at the poolside BBQ pit of the Chevrons.

Blessed with a good weather, young seafarers networked with one another while participating in the chargrilled BBQ fare.

As the young seafarers took turns to grill food for one another, relationships were strengthened and a close-knit community was formed among the seafarers through shared experiences. The barbeque session opened up avenues for deeper connections and conversations.

Newly joined seafaring members had the opportunity to network with other experienced seafarers, where they received good and practical advice on how to get ready for their first sail. 

New SMOU member, Jade Neo (2nd from left) was surprised to see a good number of Singaporean female seafarers. Jade felt that everyone was approachable and welcoming. More than the exchange of contacts, she gained a lot of advice from her seniors saying, “I am anxious and excited for my upcoming first sail– the knowledge from the seniors will help mentally prepare me for my first voyage.”

A dose of stories from the sea where seafarers shared their experiences and challenges onboard vessels, provided much encouragement to the seafarers. Another topic of conversation around the table focused on the current shipping trend such as decarbonisation. Some of the seafarers had the opportunity to speak with YSMOU alumni who had transited to working ashore.

The conversations helped put into perspective the role and journey of the seafarer in the maritime community.

Several youth alumni members were invited by YSMOU to share their experiences and transition journey with the young seafarers.

The youth felt appreciated when YSMOU Chairman, Brother Dominic Yong, presented a Day of the Seafarer (DotS) goodie bag prepared by the Union, to honour young seafarers for their contribution towards the maritime industry. 6 lucky winners also walked away with prizes from a lucky draw, held in celebration of the DotS.

Many of the young seafarers enjoyed the YSMOU networking. Elijah Jordan, confessed that although he needed to be persuaded to attend initially, he had no regrets because he got to meet some new faces and it was an enjoyable event. The SMOU member of 2 years remarked, “The people here were very friendly and the event is a great networking opportunity. It feels good knowing that the union plans such gatherings for us as the maritime industry is a small community.”

Terence Ng (SMOU member of 13 years), agrees that the event is a good networking opportunity. “Physical meetups are still better than just catching up via social media. I thoroughly enjoyed the event, as it’s casual and hence not intimidating to meet new faces.”