All views and opinions expressed in this article are of author only.
1. Can you please tell us a little bit about yourself?
My name is Illia. I’m 24 years old, and from Odesa, Ukraine. Currently, work as 3rd Officer on container vessel.
2. How did you get into sailing?
Joined the maritime college and graduated it. Now in progress of finishing the last course at maritime academy.
3. How long have you been sailing?
I joined my fist practice as a cadet in 2017.
4. How has the recent war in Ukraine have affected seafarers?
A lot of male seafarers are forced to stay abroad to keep the opportunity for further work. Meanwhile, many seafarers still remain in Ukraine and have to pass a difficult procedure to be allowed to go abroad for the contract. Due to WAR a lot of my colleagues have been separated from their families for a long time. Some of my friends and acquaintances are already died due to bombing of civil places, houses etc.
5. Lot of Ukrainian Seafarers are now living in other countries, how is affecting their documents like renewal etc
We have some different opportunities, options, guides and procedures to prolong/ update the documents even if you are abroad. It depends on some different cases and your location either seaman is on board or ashore.
6. What challenges you faced as a seafarer when moving to other countries for asylum.
Our relatives from Montenegro supported our family to adapt for the first time there.
7. What measures have been taken by IMO for Ukrainian seafarers.
Ukrainian documents may be prolonged if they expired, and seafarers are still on board. So, it might be an additional opportunity to earn more during this difficult time for all Ukrainians. At the beginning of the war some international maritime help organizations helped seafarers with financial issues.
8. What problems Ukrainian sailors are facing these days?
To be a complete part of their families.
9. How was the response of your employer towards this situation?
Some of companies really offered some help for their seafarers and took care of seafarers’ families. Helped with apartment issues, sometimes it’s about financial ones. Sometimes companies could try to reduce of recruitment of Russians. Of course, it’s not about all.
10. Does having Russian colleagues on board affects your working environment?
The influence of Russians on the working environment depends directly. But the grade directly depends on how much grief Ukrainians have received.
11.Any major change you want in the shipping world?
Shorter contracts and higher salaries of course