THE ITF Seafarers’ Trust has launched its second photography competition to highlight the vital work of seafarers, the invisible workforce powering global trade.

The competition, with the theme “Out of Sight, Not Out of Mind”, calls on seafarers to submit digital photographs of themselves and their crew mates for a forthcoming book of 40 portraits of seafarers by seafarers.

Celebrating the 40th anniversary of the ITFST and forming part of a global campaign to raise awareness, the limited-edition book will be presented to a select list of people whose influence can have an impact on the living and working conditions of seafarers to make sure that although out of sight, seafarers are not out of mind.

Last year seafarers were stretched to the limits with international regulations made more flexible to accommodate pandemic restrictions rather than maintaining their rights and protections. This year brings the challenge of ongoing disruptions to flights, complex logistics around vaccinations, testing and quarantine. Now more than ever, we need to talk about the undervalued work of seafarers and reach a wider audience with the stories of those that transport essential food, fuel, medical supplies and consumer goods around the world.

Open to currently serving seafarers at sea or ashore, photographers of each of the 40 images selected will receive a fee of £100. The overall winner will be featured on the cover and receive a prize of £1000. The competition is open for submissions from today with a closing date of 1 May 2021. The winner will be announced on the Day of the Seafarer – 25 June 2021.

Dave Heindel, ITF Seafarers’ Trust chair of trustees said, “Seafarers have been one of the many unsung heroes of the pandemic. Unfortunately, they have been taken for granted too long now and need recognition for the critical role they play in the global supply chain. We are committing the Trust’s 40th anniversary celebrations to showcasing the lives and labours of the world’s seafarers”

Katie Higginbottom, head of the ITF Seafarers’ Trust said, “We were thrilled by the high quality of images submitted to our Still at Sea photo competition last year. They provided us with an instant window onto the challenging but also rewarding and dignified lives of thousands of seafarers crewing the global fleet. We hope to maintain the momentum of that initiative, building a unique archive and giving agency to seafarers sharing their images, stories and emotions during turbulent times.”