• Search and rescue charity MOAS (Migrant Offshore Aid Station) is looking for volunteer chefs for 2015 mission starting in May
  • Voluntary placement includes cooking for hardworking crew and hundreds of rescued migrants
  • Ex-chef says the job requires sense of adventure, remembers feeding 300 hungry and dehydrated migrants


Great chefs to brave the Mediterranean waters in exchange for an extraordinary life-saving adventure. Involves long hours of preparation as well as ad hoc search and rescue duties. Position is voluntary but honour and recognition will follow in the event of success.

Those chosen will form part of an international team of 20 crew members working on board a 40-metre vessel, the Phoenix, as part of the search and rescue charity Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS).

MOAS last year helped save 3,000 migrants during its 60 day mission in the central Mediterranean Sea.

The NGO is now preparing to resume its search and rescue operation between May and October and is looking for voluntary chefs to be part of this challenging yet rewarding project. The job is voluntary and the only reward will be helping to save lives at sea.

Simon Templer, last year’s MOAS chef remembers cooking food for 300 starving and dehydrated migrants in a scorching small boat kitchen.

“Once we had to rescue two migrant boats at one go and I had to feed 300 people. I prepared big pots of pasta and rice in tomato sauce and had to ensure it was kept warm by the time everybody was served,” said Mr Templer.

“I’ve cooked on boats before but it was nothing compared to what I’ve experienced with MOAS. It was hard, exciting and even overwhelming at times, seeing all those children being taken on board,” he added.

The next chefs need to be fully conversant in English and comfortable working at sea for a minimum of two weeks.

“Chefs interested in joining MOAS should definitely have a strong sense of adventure. They must be open to new experiences and have a hands-on approach. Since the team is so dynamic, one must also be very flexible to cater for different people and their different dietary needs. Being a chef on board the Phoenix isn’t just about cooking. It was all about making everyone feel at home as much as possible,” said Mr Templer.

MOAS will support its volunteer chefs with insurance, return airfare and a first aid and STCW 95 training (if required). The NGO is looking for persons who are healthy non-drug users and comfortable living with a documentary film-maker on board the Phoenix.

Volunteers available to participate in MOAS first operation this summer must be available to report for duty in the European island of Malta on Friday 24th April. Applicants must write to [email protected]

To keep up to date with the latest news, follow MOAS on twitter @moas_eu and use the hashtag #MOAS to enter discussions about migration.

Donations can be made on https://www.moas.eu/donate.