Helpline to deal with mental illness among seafarers launched

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on June 26, 2019 Published on June 26, 2019

Synergy Marine Group, in collaboration with iCall and the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), has launched a helpline number to address the the wellbeing and mental health concerns of seafarers at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS).

iCALL, the nine-language service at TISS, is designed to reduce seafarer suicides and enhance the general mental health and wellness of maritime personnel. The free-of-charge service is available 24x7, via phone, e-mail and a chat-based nULTA App, the company said in a statement.

The objective is to sensitise participants on issues of distress, mental illness and gender, and build skills to respond to concerns of mental health empathetically in a gender sensitive manner. Further, the service is also aimed at equipping participants with self-help coping mechanisms to address their own distress and offer support to others at sea, it said.

“Seafarers are sure to suffer the debilitating impact of psychosocial issues given the social isolation when they are on-board ships. Effective training options on wellness and stress resilience awareness are imperative and indispensable in addressing this problem,” said Capt. Rajesh Unni, Founder & CEO, Synergy Group.

“Mental health issues on-board ships are hazardous and need to be addressed with the same urgency and commitment that we address safety-related issues,” he added.

The helpline was inaugurated by Amitabh Kumar (IRS), Director-General of Shipping–India, in the presence of Capt. Rajesh Unni, Dr. Aparna Joshi, Project Director, iCall, and members from the seafaring community.

Published on June 26, 2019
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