Lloyd’s Register Foundation has awarded a grant to Sea Shepherd Global to support its programme sponsoring female maritime cadets from Africa. The grant will allow four cadets to join the crew onboard Sea Shepherd’s vessels, helping to combat illegal fishing in Africa. The cadets will be paired with experienced officers to complete their logbooks and obtain the necessary qualifications to become fully qualified seafarers. Currently, women represent just 1.2% of the global seafarer workforce, but the use of advanced technologies and training programs could increase this number to a quarter by 2050.
Despite progress, women in Africa still face significant barriers to obtaining the sea time needed for professional qualifications. Sea Shepherd Global aims to provide underrepresented seafarers with professional seagoing experience while upholding industry standards in safety and training. The partnership between Sea Shepherd Global and Lloyd’s Register Foundation was established through connections made during the Africa Blue Economy Forum in 2019. Sea Shepherd Global is committed to breaking down gender barriers in the maritime industry and promoting gender equality.
In addition to supporting female seafarers, Sea Shepherd Global benefits from having locally trained cadets onboard who have firsthand experience in ocean conservation measures. The funding from Lloyd’s Register Foundation will also enable Sea Shepherd to collaborate with other groups promoting gender equality in the maritime sector. The expansion of the programme will create opportunities for former cadets to mentor new ones from their home countries.