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The volcanic eruption and tsunamis in the Kingdom of Tonga destroyed over 200 family fishing boats

The Royal Nomuka Yacht Club needs your help to build replacement boats for distressed Tongans to keep them fishing!

How much do they cost?

  • Boat cost: US$5500
  • Safety and boat pack: US$750
  • Fishing gear pack: US$750
  • 40HP Yamaha 2 stroke engine US$3500

Shipping to Tonga is sponsored free by SWIRE SHIPPING and the Government has agreed to charge no duty or local taxes.

Total for each package = US$10,500

Who is raising the money?

Don McIntyre, Commodore of the Royal Nomuka Yacht Club and Louise Waterhouse Honorary Consul General Kingdom of Tonga in Sydney, Australia.

Who gets the boats?

Three of the first eight boats will go to Nomuka, one to Mango.

When will the boats be delivered?

The first eight boats took nine weeks to build in China and will be completed on 12th May ready to ship to Tonga. Future boats may be built in Tonga. An official handover ceremony will be held in Nuku’alofa soon.

How can I donate?

You can join the GoFundme campaign to make large or small donations. THANKS!

Can I sponsor an engine? Boat gear? Fishing gear package or complete boat with the works?

YES! If you sponsor a complete boat with the works, you can NAME the boat and your company or organisations name and logo is applied to both sides of the cabin and on a stainless steel plaque inside the boat. You are also listed on the KEEP TONGA FISHING web page. If you sponsor one of the three packages, your name and details are listed on the web page. Photos of your boat will be provided with the new owner, and if you are in Tonga you can christen the boat at the handover ceremony! We would love to hear from you. Contact

The Boat Specifications

Custom build PANGA-23 commercial standard, double hull with full cabin (Only four packed into 40ft container cabin and seats removed). White hull, safety yellow cabin top, light gray seats. Length 7m. Beam 1.8m. Draught .76m. Weight 550kg plus cabin. Max 10 people.

  • Full foam flotation glassed into gunnel and under floor, self-draining hull, closing scuppers.
  • Rear built-in seat storage compartment with two locker lids and catch
  • Three moulded bench seats bolt on in Tonga
  • Cabin top with three windows and two stainless steel top handrails. Bolt on in Tonga. Bolts and sealant supplied
  • Bow anchor locker and catch with strong stainless bollard for towing
  • Two aft and two forward stainless mooring cleats
  • Two transom SS U bolts and one bow U bolt
  • Stainless steel anti-chafe bumper strip on the stem
  • All bolts and tubes of sealer to secure cabin and seats

Safety Kit and Boat Gear: US$750

  • Marine paint primer to seal the underwater hull, then RED hard antifouling paint, two coats.
  • 7.5kg Bruce anchor, 12 m chain + 60m rope x 1
  • 100m x 12mm 3 strand polypropylene mooring/anchor line x 1
  • EVA foam fenders flotation device 55cm x 30cm x 5cm x 2
  • Paddles telescopic emergency paddles x 4
  • Emergency rechargeable, waterproof, floating, marine VHF handheld radio and charger x 1
  • SOLAS CCS CE collar approved life vests with rescue line x 8
  • SOLAS lifebuoy x 1
  • Waterproof first aid kit x 1
  • Waterproof torches x 3
  • Flashing LED strobe light with photocell x 3
  • Signaling emergency heliograph mirror x 1
  • Steering compass x 1
  • General tool kit x 1

Fishing Gear for each Boat: US$750

  • Heavy duty commercial standard 110 litre cooler
  • Various weight fishing lines, large spools trolling lines, hand reels, sinkers, various hooks and treble hooks, swivels, squid jigs, mahi mahi and tuna lures
  • Diving hand spears x 3
  • Diving masks, snorkel fins x 3 sets

Engine: US$3500

  • Yamaha 40hp 2 stroke E40JMHL
  • An extra fuel tank and fuel line

What happened?

On 15th January 2022 at 1714hrs local time in the Kingdom of Tonga, the HUNGA Volcano erupted with one of the largest explosive forces ever recorded, sending shockwaves around the globe and ash 56km into the air! Two hours later it was heard 2000km away in New Zealand and even 9700Km away in Alaska.

In that instant, a Tsunamis up 15m high rushed toward Nomuka Iki island, 60km to the North East which was the closest island to the explosion with Nomuka island just 2Km on and Mango Island a little further.

The impact was devastating. Houses were washed away as people ran for their lives. Two people died, one each on Nomuka and Mango with many injured. The rest of Tonga and the Ha’apai islands were also hit hard with two more deaths, hundreds of houses destroyed and people’s lives changed forever. Many nations have come to help in the ongoing recovery effort.

What’s the plan?

There is one issue however that needs urgent HELP! Approximately 200 small local fishing boats were destroyed by the Tsunamis. These boats are the lifeblood of many island families and communities. They are used for fishing and local transport. A fishing boat is a major asset for any family and to have it destroyed is a huge blow to the ability of that family, or community to provide for themselves. They need help and they need boats NOW!

Don McIntyre, Commodore of the Royal Nomuka Yacht Club and Louise Waterhouse, Honorary Consul General Kingdom of Tonga discussed the problem a few weeks after the explosion and established a plan to KEEP TONGA FISHINGThe objective was simple. To organise an initial eight Panga style boats that are safe, strong and similar to those already being used in TONGA, with Yamaha Motors, all safety and fishing gear to Tonga as soon as possible and at the best possible price.

An order was placed in China for the first eight boats and the search for equipment suppliers began. As Tonga is now getting back on her feet, future boats may be built in TONGA.

Who is organising this?

The Royal Nomuka Yacht Club was formed on the island of Nomuka IKI with Royal assent from HRH Crown Prince Tupoutoʻa ʻUlukalala of Tonga. On October 15th 2015, Don McIntyre was made the Commodore and Louise Waterhouse Rear Commodore of the RNYC. With support from McIntyre Adventure, over AU$500,000 was invested in infrastructure and logistics for a club house to support a youth sailing program and a Marine Discovery Centre. This entire facility together with six brand new Optimist dinghies and rescue boat were completely washed away by the Tsunami. The entire vegetation on the island simply disappeared with it, such was the power of the Tsunamis. With a strong sailing and boating background, Don McIntyre and McIntyre Adventure is supporting the organisation and co- ordination of KEEP TONGA FISHING in Association with TONGA BLUE Ltd in Tonga. Both companies are owned by Don McIntyre.