Airlink is a humanitarian relief organization that connects airlines with vetted NGOs to assist communities in crisis worldwide.
In late 2009, Airlink was formed by the ISTAT Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the International Society for Transport Aircraft Trading, which supports individuals and institutions that promote the advancement of commercial aviation and humanitarianism.
In 2010, when a 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Airlink responded for the first time. Despite few opportunities for commercial airlift and hundreds of tons of supplies backing up at the airport, Airlink joined forces with global NGOs and both commercial and private aviation to coordinate the movement of more than 2,000 doctors and nurses, as well as more than 40 shipments of aid totaling +500,000 pounds by the end of February 2010.
Since then, Airlink has worked with its airline partners to help NGOs respond to humanitarian emergencies where the supply chain is constrained and international aid is required. Our responses include the tsunami in Japan, Hurricane Sandy and numerous tornadoes in the US, Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, the Ebola crisis in West Africa, earthquakes in Nepal, Ecuador, and Indonesia, and numerous hurricanes across the Caribbean. Airlink also focuses on alleviating suffering in protracted emergencies, including the Syrian refugee crisis, Rohingya refugee crisis, and complex crises in South Sudan and the Horn of Africa. Finally, Airlink also works with airlines to address ongoing issues in the developing world, such as access to clean water, food, shelter, and medical aid; we believe addressing these issues is key to community resiliency and reduces shocks when natural disasters do occur.
Today, Airlink’s network consists of more than 40 commercial and charter airlines and 80+ international NGOs. Airlink and its airline partners have transported more than 5,000 passengers and more than 3,000,000 pounds of cargo in support of a broad range of humanitarian initiatives. Airlink estimates the value of these movements at about USD $8,000,000. Ultimately, our work with NGO partners around the world allows them to redirect these funds into projects on the ground, helping those in need.