Shipping and trading industry support of Mercy Ships’ Cargo Day has reached $651,400 — double the figure of a year earlier.

The fundraising venture was backed by 83 companies — 24 charterers, 20 shipowners, 23 shipbrokers, seven port agents, and nine service outfits and associations.

Who thought we could have achieved this,” said Tim Webb, director and head of tanker chartering at Barry Roglianio Salles.

He has been instrumental in promoting Cargo Day after twice visiting its hospital ship, the 16,572-gt Africa Mercy (built 1980).

Mercy Ships Global executive director Bryce Wagner says $651,400 is equivalent to providing: More than 1,200 surgery and therapy sessions; Or over 2,400 “new smiles” for children who had a cleft lip; Or dental treatment for 5,000 people; Or sight for 2,400 blind people; Or training more than 600 African doctors. “In other words, the impact is huge,” said Wagner, who thanked TradeWinds for its involvement in spreading the Cargo Day word.

Webb added: “A big thanks to all the shipping and trading industry for the support and participating in changing so many lives.

In 2016, more than $300,000 was raised. Broker Joe Green of Clarksons Platou in Geneva described Mercy Ships as a “great and worthy cause”, and hopefully next year’s Cargo Day will be a bigger success.

Scott Moncrieff of Sahara Group said: “Amazing result for the second Mercy Ships Cargo Day.” He says Sahara was “proud to be a supporter” of a charity “where we are confident that funds raised are being utilised in a proper and proportionate way”.

Gilles Rolland, managing director of Nyala Shipping, reflected on comments he made at the Mercy Ships Cargo Day Ball in Geneva on 4 October that the “shipping community getting together to support such an incredible charity is a natural and logical partnership”.

He said: “Africa is also the perfect place to help. Not only because the need for medical care is endless but also for our industry it is a place where we load crude oil and where we discharge products.

Rene Lehmann, managing director of Mercy Ships Switzerland, describes Cargo Day as an “amazing and unique initiative”.

The project, which is set to become a regular fund-raising event in the shipping calendar, generated 92 cargoes from which broker commissions flowed, nine address commissions and 31 separate pledges of money.

Mercy Ships communication manager Corinne Kemp said at the time of writing that funds from four remaining cargoes could swell the total further.


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by Geoff Garfield, Tradewinds

November 24th, 2017

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