ITF in Georgia enhances shore leave
16 March 2012
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|Robert Serapio, right, gets down to serious chess during shore leave at Batumi, Georgia.|
Recognising the importance of shore leave to the seafarer's life, the ITF in Georgia has been facilitating trips and outings to visiting crew.In February, the Georgian Seafarers' Union hosted excursions for four crewmembers from the Liberia-flagged Genco Ocean while their ship was in Batumi port. The union showed the visitors around the city, its botanical gardens and other sights. As master Robert Serapio expressed a wish to play chess against a serious player, he was introduced to players at the chess club in the seaside park, which he visited every day while in Batumi.
Inga Beradze, an assistant and interpreter for the union, explains that the ITF inspector offers excursions and other activities to visiting crew as part of routine inspections of vessels. The crewmembers visiting from the Genco Ocean, which is covered by an ITF-recognised collective bargaining agreement, were all from the Philippines and members of ITF-affiliated unions.