A Holiday Initiative of Seafarers International House

Would you or your congregation like to bring joy to seafarers who will not be home with their families for Christmas? Our port chaplains bring satchels filled with gifts to the ships for Christmas. Every crew member on a ship regardless of their faith or nationality will open their satchels, each containing:


• One Sweatshirt – hooded or unhooded (size M-L-XL)
• Three Pairs of Socks – thermal or white gym
• One T- Shirt (size M-L-XL)
• One Knitted Winter Cap (matching scarf optional),
• One Can of Nuts or Large Bar of Chocolate
• A Holiday or Christmas Card from YOU!

You pick the colors, styles and brands, but please no substitutions from the list. The Christmas-at-Sea satchels should be comparable for each member of the crew. And, please assemble each satchel with sweatshirts and T-shirts of the same size and label the satchel with a M, L, or XL.

What might otherwise have been another lonely night at sea becomes a joyous occasion, because complete strangers ashore have taken the time to share the spirit of Christmas with these otherwise forgotten seafarers!

If it is more convenient, you may make a donation to “Christmas-at-Sea” and have us purchase the items for you. Typically, a completely filled satchel costs about $25.

We are collecting the satchels throughout the year until December 10. Remember to put a return address on your Christmas cards, because occasionally crew members will send you a personal thank you.


To receive empty satchels and to coordinate delivery or pick up, please contact:

For New England: Ruth Setaro, 203-687-2177,
All other regions:
Noreen Fleming, 212-677-4800 (ext. 1218),, or
Marsh Drege, 212-677-4800 (ext. 1204),

or mail satchels or your donation marked “Christmas-at-Sea” to:
Seafarers International House, 123 East 15th Street, New York, NY 10003

Useful links:

Printable instructions as one page PDF.

Instructions on how to knit hats and scarves for seafarers.

Instructions on how to crochet hats and scarves for seafarers.