M/V Caribbean Mercy

1994-2006 (retired)

Formerly a Norwegian ferry (Polarys), the Caribbean Mercy was acquired by Mercy Ships in 1994. In her 12-year history, the Caribbean Mercy contributed more than 20% of Mercy Ships total output in terms of number of services, value and beneficiaries, serving primarily in Central America and the Caribbean basin. While in port, she housed an average crew of 120 volunteers from more than 20 nations.

The Caribbean Mercy offered an eye surgery unit, cargo capacity conference and seminar facilities used for a variety of programmes. Her fuel and water tanks provided a cruising range of 12 days, or 3600 miles.

Ports Visited

The Caribbean Mercy visited 137 ports and conducted 56 field assignments in 13 nations: Dominican Republic, Haiti, Nicaragua, Guatemala, El Salvador, Russia, Korea, China, Philippines, Colombia, Puerto Rico, Honduras and Belize.

Lifetime Legacy

Since 1994, crew onboard the Caribbean Mercy offered close to 289,000 services, at a value of over $113 million and with 348,800 people as direct beneficiaries. Crew onboard the Caribbean Mercy:

  • performed more than 7,000 surgeries such as cataract removal, strabismus, dental and orthopaedic procedures.
  • treated more than 54,300 people in village medical clinics.
  • performed 18,200 dental treatments.
  • taught more than 1,500 local health care and professional workers, who have in turn trained many others in primary health care.
  • trained local medical professionals in modern health care techniques to carry on after the ship’s departure.
  • delivered more than $2.3 million of medical equipment, hospital supplies and medicines.
  • completed more than 140 construction and agriculture projects including schools, clinics, orphanages and water wells.


During her first 42 years, the ship only travelled within Norway. During her 12 years of service as a Mercy Ship, she visited 18 countries. In 2006, she was sold to a family foundation to be renovated.


Breadth 12m
Gross Tonnage 2,152
Built 1952 Aalborg, Denmark
Registered Panama
Capacity 87 berths
Cargo Capacity   688 m3
Main Engines MAK diesel 3,670 hp
Draft 5.1m
Surveyed ByDet Norske Veritas


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