Natural and human-caused disasters often devastate local businesses, demolish infrastructure, displace residents and bring commerce to a halt. When communities around the world must endure these hard times, UPS is there to lend a hand. We work with global relief and aid organizations to respond and help rebuild communities after a disaster. We also help provide tools and resources so they’re better prepared to withstand future disasters.
Our global reach and optimized network in more than 220 countries and territories gives us the ability to provide aid when and where it’s needed most. In addition to providing funds and in-kind assistance, UPS also partners with many of the world’s top humanitarian relief agencies such as the American Red Cross, CARE, Salvation Army, UN-OCHA, UNICEF, UNISDR, UNHCR, Good360, NVOAD, MedShare, WHO, Save the Children and the World Food Programme. A collaboration of our skills and expertise has the power to help communities recover more efficiently and more effectively.
Accelerating Technology for Humanitarian Relief
In 2017, we provided over $11 million in humanitarian relief funding for disaster response, recovery and emergency preparedness, and coordinated 546 humanitarian shipments across 61 countries. UPS played a major role in response efforts following disasters such as a devastating hurricane season in the U.S. and the Caribbean, severe famine across East Africa, and flooding across the United States. UPS also provided urgent relief shipments for refugees in Africa, Europe, and the Middle East.
UPS donates money and materials, but we also donate the time and expertise of our skilled employees who supplement our partner organizations’ efforts by volunteering in times of greatest need. The UPS Humanitarian Experts on Mission Program places UPS logistics experts on long-term assignment to our partner organizations. For example, UPS managers utilize their extensive Healthcare, Engineering, and Customer Solutions experience to develop strategies for governments in Africa in partnership with Gavi and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. You can learn more about the humanitarian relief efforts of The UPS Foundation in their section.
Taking to the Skies to Deliver Urgent Supplies through Rwanda Drone Network
Rwanda Drone Delivers Humanitarian Relief
Rwanda Drone Delivers Humanitarian Relief
Now there is new hope for those in desperate need of critical health products like blood and vaccines in Rwanda, where infrastructure challenges have caused critical health products spoil or fail to reach the individuals who urgently need them. In May 2016, UPS announced a partnership with Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and Zipline, a California-based robotics company, to explore using drones to transform the way life-saving medicines like blood and vaccines are delivered across the world.
This public-private partnership with the Rwandan government combines a century of global logistics expertise, cold chain and healthcare delivery from UPS with Zipline’s national drone delivery network and Gavi’s experience in developing countries focused on saving lives and protecting health in the most remote places of the world. The UPS Foundation has awarded more than $1,000,000 in cash, in-kind, and technical support to help establish the drone delivery network in Rwanda.
The Rwandan government have been using Zipline drones, which can make up to 150 deliveries per day of life-saving blood to 21 transfusing facilities located in the western half of the country since October 2016. In 2017, the program’s first full year of functionality, drones successfully delivered more than 3,250 units of blood – nearly 900 of which were life-saving. In 2018, the drone delivery initiative is expanding to include vaccines, treatments for HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, and many other essential and lifesaving medicines. Rwanda’s drone delivery operation is expected to save thousands of lives over the next three years and could serve as a model for other countries.
Providing Aid for Syrian Refugees
The refugee crisis has continued to escalate, with staggering numbers of Syrians and other migrants fleeing their homes in search of safety from conflict.
Global Refugee Crisis
UPS has provided more than $7 million in ongoing support for the crisis since 2012, including significant funding, in-kind, and volunteer support. In 2017, The UPS Foundation and its partners provided relief for refugees across Europe, Africa, and Asia, with UPS facilitating more than 54 shipments of vital relief supplies on behalf of UNHCR, World Food Programme (WFP), CARE, UNICEF, MedShare International, The Salvation Army, and more. These shipments provided much-needed food, shelter, medicine, and hygienic supplies to refugees and internally displaced people.
In sum, The UPS Foundation contributed more than $2.6 million worth of cash and in-kind support to the refugee crisis in 2017, surpassing its pledge of $1 million made during President Obama’s “Partnership for Refugees” event in 2016.