Photography by Sea Mercy/Rivergate Marina & Shipyard
23 January 2017
In times of crises, the superyacht and broader marine industry is known to step up and offer practical assistance. In the wake of devastating Tropical Cyclone Pam in 2015 and Tatiana in 2016, New Caledonia, Fiji and the islands of the South Pacific were in the headlines. While most communities have since recovered, many are still without access to some of life’s basics, such as clean drinking water, clothing and school supplies.
Captain John Crupi, skipper of Dorothea III, reached out to his Australian contacts, Geoff Majer of Major Yacht Services at Sydney Superyacht Marina, Rivergate Marina & Shipyard in Brisbane and Carrie Carter, Director of Carter Marine Agencies in Cairns to collaborate on a mission to deliver much-needed goods to this region.
Rivergate answered the call and received donations of water containers, crew uniforms, clothing, bedding, stationery supplies, books, toys and sporting equipment.
From the collection points of Sydney and Brisbane, the goods were transported to Cairns and then on to the Pacific, thanks to the assistance of Chloe from Noumea Ocean and the tireless work of Sea Mercy in Fiji.
One donor, Jaybel Office Choice in Brisbane, said they were motivated to contribute because of a fundamental human instinct to help people in need.
We were enthusiastic to supply office products, school supplies and books,” said Chintan Ghandi, sales and marketing manager at Jaybel Office Choice. “As well as benefitting from the pure joy of giving, we are always happy to help people in need. Rivergate is in Brisbane and we like to collaborate with local businesses on worthy projects, like this.”
Jaybel specialises in office and school supplies, stationery and office furniture, as well as custom printed products and uniforms.
Geoff Majer said the objective of the mission was to help the island people who are so generous to the superyacht industry in their hospitality and friendliness. “The South Pacific is a key region for our industry. We rely on the local people in many ways and this is about giving back. There’s the feel-good factor of being able to make a difference to communities, and the recycling imperative of giving quality goods a second life.”
Carrie Carter agreed. “Every little bit helps. When the call comes from our clients to help assist other areas in need due to crisis, of course we will do our best to help out. The superyacht fraternity works together to help those iconic island areas that offer so much to the industry, being places of such beauty and culture. Superyacht owners and charter guests love to explore this idyllic region and as a return for that experience, of course they are going to assist as they can easily access these areas.”
Andrew Cannon, General Manager at Rivergate was only too pleased to act as a conduit and collection centre for the initiative. “We have worked with YachtAid Global in the past and are always eager to lend our support in any way we can. We have the network of reliable contacts who act swiftly to supply goods and move them through the chain to the distribution points for people who are truly grateful for the kinds of things we take for granted.”