When fishermen fall on hard times the effects are felt by the whole family. A scarcity of fish and atrocious weather has meant the fishing on the South Coast of England has been particularly difficult.

In such hardship, fishermen’s children can miss out on things other families take for granted, such as school trips. We recently received this letter (right) from a fisherman called Andy. We publish it today to show how your support really does mean that together we can improve the lives of fishing families when times are toughest.

Fishermens rock

I am just writing to express my gratitude and say thank you from the bottom of my heart. I cannot express in words how much Nick O’Neill (your south coast officer) helps me and my family out, the man has a heart of gold and has been there for my family and me through these very difficult times. He has been a rock for my fiance and 2 little girls, I can’t thank Nick enough for everything he does for my family, he is always there for my three girls, it is so good of the mission and Nick to always be on the end of the line, and his support for me and my family, emotionally, and financially should be commended. I can’t thank you and your staff enough for helping financially for met little girl’s school trip as money is obviously tight with me not at sea (where I belong). So, from me and my 3 girls, a very big thank you. Nick O’Neill deserves a medal for his compassion and dedication to all the fishermen on the south coast, thank you, kind regards, Andy.

Nick O’Neill comments, “Fishing is such an unpredictable volatile career. As well as a constant danger at sea there are often economic pressures as well. We were able to access a grant from the Royal Merchant Navy Education Foundation to cover the cost of the school trip of Andy’s daughter and we are currently working hard to improve their housing conditions which are not great.”

Andy’s letter also speaks of Nick’s dedication, compassion and emotional care, characteristics that are a hallmark of every Fishermen’s Mission Superintendent. With your continued support, we can be “the fisherman’s rock,” dedicated to caring for our fishermen and their families.