Mental health and wellbeing support

We have extended our free mental health and wellbeing advice and support for seafarers. This service is now available to all working and retired seafarers and their families through our online provider Togetherall.

Benefits and debt advice line

If you have been affected by Covid-19 and need free, confidential, and impartial advice, the Seafarers Advice & Information Line (SAIL) can assist you with information on benefits and debt related issues.


Grants for urgent needs and priority debts are available. We are working closely with our partner organisations to ensure that all grant applications are processed promptly. Please apply through SAIL or caseworkers from SSAFA, the Fishermen’s Mission and Nautilus.

The Maritime Anchor Fund has been set up by The Seafarers Charity for working age Merchant Navy seafarers affected by Covd-19. For more information on how to apply for a grant contact SAIL.

In addition to this, for Nautilus members, a Covid-19 hardship grant is available to buy food and other essential items. You can apply for a special fast-tracked grant while you wait for your first benefit payment. Contact us for more information.


Working seafarers can access free physiotherapy safely at this time. Consultations are available by telephone and video, as well as face-to-face, with additional online exercise classes to keep you fit.

Dreadnought Medical Service

During the Covid-19 crisis, and in line with other NHS services, all elective work at St Thomas’ Hospital using the Dreadnought Medical Service stopped. However, the good news is that the NHS is now encouraging hospitals and GP’s surgeries, etc, to reopen as normally as possible — including for acute procedures. Seafarers who need elective procedures can visit their GP or MCA-approved doctor to request a referral to the hospital via the Dreadnought Medical Unit. Those with existing referrals will be contacted directly by the hospital. Unavoidably, there will be delays as normal service slowly resumes, but it is good news that the important medical services for seafarers upon whom the country and the economy rely, are slowly returning.

SeaFit Programme

Health and wellbeing support is still available to fishers and their families by phone and email. Local events are being held where possible. Details of these events will be publicised locally.

Also in this section

Mental health and wellbeing

Working at sea can be challenging to your mental health too. We fund Togetherall to offer a free, confidential online service to seafarers who need help with mental health and wellbeing issues. It includes access to trained counsellors, a support network, self-help materials and one-to-one therapy.

Read more

Our work on health and fitness

To help you live an independent and active life, both in work and in retirement, SHS are continually developing the work we do to meet the health and fitness needs of seafarers.

Read more

Grants to seafarers

Life can be unpredictable, no matter how carefully you plan. Sudden illness, unexpected changes in circumstances, the loss of someone you love - can cause financial and emotional distress. That's where we come in. We can help with unpaid bills and grants for essential household goods, disability aids and equipment, and other expenses.

Read more

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