Training Courses for Volunteers

Mercy Ships provides training courses to help prospective volunteers learn more about our organisation and its work. These courses are only required of long-term volunteers serving for two years or longer. For questions and registration information, please contact our People & Culture team at [email protected]

On Boarding Training Program

On Boarding is a three-week training program followed by a two-week practicum to prepare new crew and staff for their time of service with Mercy Ships and includes topics such as Faith Foundations, Personal & Interpersonal Development, some departmental training.

The program is currently offered 3-4 times a year (typically January/February, March/April, June/July, and September/October) at the Mercy Ships International Support Center (ISC) in Lindale, Texas and once per year at a location on the African continent (location varies).

Completion of the On Boarding training program is required for all crew joining the community of faith on board, but is open to all volunteers. You must be accepted for a position on board a Mercy Ship before attending this program. There is no cost associated with this course, but each participant is responsible for their own travel expenses.

Foundations of Mercy Ships

Foundations of Mercy Ships (FMS) is a 2-3 day course held at the International Support Centre in Texas. The course helps individuals interested in Mercy Ships understand its mission and the details about living and working on board. It is available to anyone wanting more information but only required for volunteers serving longer-term (in addition to our On Boarding program). There is no cost associated with this course, but each participant is responsible for their own travel expenses.

Maritime Regulatory Training

Since our crew are living and working on board a ship, naturally some positions require certain licenses or maritime training. All non-medical crew joining for more than six months are encouraged to join us for Basic Training and Crowd Management. The courses are also offered the week before Foundations of Mercy Ships several times per year.

Keeping Us Going

Our mission of hope and healing extends well past the hospital wards on our ships. The Mercy Ships crew consists of doctors, nurses, IT specialists, teachers, chefs, and even vehicle mechanics and drivers!

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