Local Seafarers Center Receives Enormous Donation of Magazines
Thousands of books and magazines cover the floor of the Fort Vancouver Seafarers Center (FVSC) thanks to a recent donation from the estate of Vancouver philanthropist, Ed Lynch.
Kent Williams, Executive Director of FVSC, described the impact this donation has made not only on the donation-run center, but the seafarers themselves.
“Due to COVID-19 regulations, crews calling on the port have been unable to leave their ships for more than a year,” said Williams. “In the past, our organization offered an array of free amenities to the visiting mariners, including local shopping trips, tours and sightseeing, as well as access to the seafarers center, that includes a library with books in multiple languages, a non-denominational chapel, a kitchen, games and comfortable areas to rest.”
Volunteers with the seafarers center pivoted their services during COVID-19 and have been shopping on the crew members’ behalf. Laptops and other electronics have been among the most popular items requested by the seafarers, providing entertainment while on board and keeping the crews connected to their families back home.
Across the globe, there are over 1.6 million seafarers aboard cargo and container ships and the FVSC usually hosts around 3,000 of those mariners each year.
“Even before the pandemic, the mariners were unseen by the general population due to the terminal and center being located within a secured area of the port,” said Williams. “Our organization runs entirely on the donations of individual philanthropists, faith partners and local businesses. This donation will make a significant impact on countless seafarers.”
Thank you to the wonderful volunteers at the FVSC who give their time to make the lives of seafarers a little better during the COVID-19 pandemic.
If you would like to learn more about the FVSC or learn how you can help seafarers visiting the Port of Vancouver, contact Kent Williams at 360-694-9300 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more about Ed and Dollie Lynch, visit https://www.columbian.com/sponsored/ed-and-dollie-lynch/ or https://www.columbian.com/news/2015/jun/08/farewell-to-a-community-hero-ed-lynch-vancouver/.