Application as a crew member

Thank you for your interest in becoming part of our crew. We have received a very large number of applications for the 2021 rescue missions, so unfortunately we cannot accept any more applications at this time.

Those who would still like to be involved in sea rescue can join our local groups. Our local groups are represented throughout Germany and beyond and are always happy to welcome new, committed members. Our onshore crew supports Sea-Eye’s rescue missions in a creative way, taking our demands to the streets and informing about the situation at the external borders of the European Union.

Demonstration in Berlin © Sophie Seydel

The rescue missions

The rescue missions are carried out by qualified and motivated crew members. Our international task force is made up of twenty people with very different skills. The missions are generally scheduled for six weeks. Since spots in our crew are limited, unfortunately we cannot guarantee a claim to a specific position at any point.

Our task forces consist of volunteering crew members (operational crew) and professional sailors (ship crew).

Descriptions of the positions on board

Operational crew

You have good sea legs and are “weatherproof”, enjoy cooking and are willing and able to improvise. You’ll need to prepare three meals every single day for a crew of max. 20 people. Experience in the preparation of vegetarian and vegan food is required as well as organizational talent. This includes ordering, storing and monitoring supplies, provisions and cooling systems during the entire mission.

After a rescue, it may be necessary to provide food for far more people than the regular crew. The crew will support you in preparing all meals. Good knowledge of English is required.

You hold a certificate in accordance with § 43 of the German Infection Protection Act (Lebensmittelhygiene-Gesundheitszeugnis gem. § 43 IFSG), which must be issued no later than three months prior to embarkation.

The medical team on board consists of the doctor and the paramedic. It is your responsibility to care for all medical emergencies of the crew and the guests.

During a rescue, you are in close contact with the deck manager and the head of mission. You ensure order in the infirmary, are responsible for the completeness of the ship’s pharmacy, maintain the inventory and inventory lists and are responsible for handling the narcotics. Emergencies and treatment of everyone on the ALAN KURDI must be logged and documented accordingly. If necessary, the human rights observer must be informed about reported and identified violations or ill-treatment (evidence of torture etc.).

Prerequisite for the position is a license to practice medicine and ideally specialist training in anesthesia, surgery, emergency medicine, trauma surgery or a comparable field. Good English language skills are important, as is handling hardware and software for documentation.

You have already led missions in a leading or deputy position with Sea-Eye or have worked for other civil sea rescue organizations or for humanitarian NGOs before.

You train the entire team on the way to the operational SAR area and coordinate the SAR operations during a rescue. Standardized operating procedures (SOPs) are available for this. You are in direct radio contact with the RIB leader and deck manager and work closely with the captain. The captain is authorized to issue instructions to you regarding all questions of the ship’s command and general or special matters of safety.

Concerning strategic questions, you consult the operational support on land or the board. Your tasks include the creation and review of operational reports and protocols, as well as the organization of the routine work of the operational team on board. With your willingness to participate in everyday ship life, you demonstrate good teamwork skills. You hold and lead the daily briefings and familiarize the team with the current political situation and the principles of civil sea rescue.

You have good to very good computer knowledge and are fluent in written and spoken English, and ideally another European language (e.g. Spanish, Italian, French).

As a human rights observer, you have a particularly important and observing function on board. It is all about recording events in the SAR (search&rescue) area without distractions from rescue operations. What is happening on site? Where are people in distress at sea? Which actors are present? Who disturbs, hinders or even endangers operations?

In the event of an emergency, you are part of the team on the bridge of the ship and support the head of mission. You summarize your observations and documentation in a mission report. If necessary, you can also use the latest reports from reliable external sources, for example from IOM and UNHCR.

You have to have very good English skills, both spoken and written, and ideally have experience with humanitarian operations on water or land.

As a media coordinator, you are our gateway for the public. You monitor and operate the media hardware and ensure that it runs smoothly at all times. Daily reports are created by collecting, viewing and sorting photo, video and text material in a timely and up-to-date manner.

You are in contact with our press office. With very good knowledge in dealing with image and text processing software, you are responsible for a complete and comprehensive documentation of our rescue mission. The human rights observer and the head of mission provide you with further materials and information.

Before the start of the mission, you will be extensively prepared for the mission by our press department and will be responsible for instructing the crew on board about how to correctly deal with media and social networks. Your English is fluent, both spoken and written, and ideally you also have experience with humanitarian operations on water or land.

As a paramedic you should have many years of experience in the emergency services or in related medical professions. Together with the doctor, you will be responsible for medical emergencies in routine operations and during a mission in the medical emergency team on board.

You have the ability to work in a team, the ability to grasp things quickly and efficiency in stressful situations. After a mission, you will prepare a report with the physician. A good command of English is required.

You are not part of the rescue team and are exempt from the rescue operations to do your work as journalists. However, as part of the crew, you are of course integrated into everyday ship life and are included in the daily routines. Before the start of the mission, there will be a detailed discussion and briefing by our press department.

As a RIB communicator, you are the first to make contact with the people on the boat in distress. You are sitting at the bow of one of our RIB rubber boats and appoint one person among the refugees to be the mediator/translator. Quiet gestures, clear and short sentences and instructions with constant eye contact will ensure safety and reassurance, so as to keep everything calm and controlled for the life jackets to be handed over.

Very good English and/ or French language skills are required, basic Arabic language skills are desirable.

You will steer one of the emergency boats responsibly. To do this, you need to think and act quickly- also in very stressful situations, should maneuver carefully, and be able to work well in a team. You are also responsible for the maintenance and taking care of the RIB and are actively supported by the machinist.

The tasks of a rescue boat after craning include taking the life jackets and handing them over to the people in distress. Sometimes people have to be rescued from sea or injured people have to be transported.

You speak English well. A prerequisite for your participation is possession of a valid certificate of proficiency, for example the SBF See or an equivalent, internationally recognized certificate. You hold a VHF radio certificate (SRC or LRC or comparable certificates).

You have already participated in one or more missions in a leading position and have a lot of experience in rescue operations at sea and/ or on land.

As a RIB leader, you should be very assertive and but also be able to work well in a team and you must be able to carry out a triage. You should be able to take emergency measures in the smallest of spaces and be in constant radio contact with the head of mission and the deck manager. You are authorized to give instructions to the RIB driver and RIB communicator.

You speak English fluently. You have a VHF radio certificate (SRC or LRC or comparable certificates).

As support for our engine team, you are jointly responsible for the safe and stable operation of the ship. You work alternately with the Chief Engineer and other technical supporters on a dedicated watch plan. The main task during your watch is the maintenance of all relevant technical systems and machines as well as keeping them in operation. Your work may also include repairing those systems. Difficult working conditions such as swell and high temperatures in the machine room mean that this kind of work is associated with high stress, which is why good physical fitness is a prerequisite.

During the rescue operations, additional work is required, such as guiding/ operating the crane when launching the emergency boats, being on look-out, caring for guests on board, handing out water and food to guests and assisting the medical team.

You should have experience with the operation and maintenance of large machines. Ideally, you know about SKL marine engines. You are quick witted, have a keen sense of perception and can easily handle new technical processes and adapt to new procedures quickly. Your have to have good English skills – both in written and spoken form. If you have professional training as a ship mechanic or as a ship operating assistant with the required STCW certificates, you can also apply for the position of the “Chief Engineer” in the ship’s professional crew.


Ship crew

Certificate according to STCW-Convention: III/3, VI/2, VI/3

Valid medical fitness certificate for seafarers.

Certificate according to STCW-Convention: II/2, IV/2, VI/2, VI/3.

Valid medical fitness certificate for seafarers.

Certificate according to STCW-Convention: III/1, VI/2, VI/3

Valid medical fitness certificate for seafarers.

EU/EEA national

Certificate according to STCW-Convention: II/2, IV/2, VI/2, VI/3.

Valid medical fitness certificate for seafarers.

Certificate according to STCW-Convention: II/1, IV/2, VI/2, VI/3

Valid medical fitness certificate for seafarers.

Certificate according to STCW-Convention: VI/1

Valid medical fitness certificate for seafarers.

Certificate according to STCW-Convention: II/4, VI/1 or II/5, VI/1

Valid medical fitness certificate for seafarers.

Certificate according to STCW-Convention: III/4, VI/1 or III/5, VI/1

Valid medical fitness certificate for seafarers.