February Partner Update

February Partner Update

February 2023 Partner Update: Airlink’s Latest Operations

Bangladesh – Rohingya Refugee Crisis

Response

After 700,000 Rohingya fled Myanmar in 2017, nearly one million now reside in Cox’s Bazar, the largest refugee camp in Bangladesh. The refugee camp relies on humanitarian assistance to sustain its inhabitants with basic needs such as food, water, shelter and health. Thanks to Qatar Airways and Cathay Pacific, Airlink was able to support the movement of five pallets of critical medicines and medical equipment for MedGlobal’s response to the ongoing Rohingya Refugee crisis in Bangladesh.

Marshall Islands – COVID-19 Response

Response

In August, the Marshall Islands experienced their first case of COVID-19. For the Marshall Islands, lack of access to new medical equipment as well as medical training means patients are often without critically needed care. With support from United Airlines, Airlink supported two flights for Nito’s Wings to conduct the distribution of and training for much needed medical equipment to support local health systems strengthening.

Ukraine – Conflict & Displacement

Response

Nearly one year since the onset of the war in Ukraine, Airlink remains committed to support humanitarian needs in Ukraine and surrounding countries. Our sustained response has been made possible thanks to the generosity and consistent support of partners at AeromexicoAir CanadaAlaska AirlinesAmerican AirlinesAmerijetBritish AirwaysFlexport.orgPriority Worldwide ServicesSEKO LogisticsUnited Airlines, UPS Foundation, and Virgin Atlantic.

Renewed waves of violence have increased the need for assistance, already compounded by the brutal winter conditions and damaged critical infrastructure. Millions of people are without electricity, or regularly experience disruptions, limiting access to heating systems, water supplies, and other services. Alongside the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Airlink secured airlift for a shipment of generators which will be utilized to power hospitals and civilian facilities in Ukraine. Winterization efforts remain critical to support communities impacted by damaged infrastructure. A shipment of winter clothing and supplies for children arrived in Ukraine on behalf of For Wellbeing to protect this vulnerable population from harsh winter conditions.

Since February last year, there have been over 750 reported attacks on health facilities, creating a significant gap in health systems capacity. Airlink and its partners continue to coordinate the movement of medical supplies and equipment, medicines and trauma relief items. In January, Airlink supported shipments on behalf of several partners including Project HOPERazomSmart Medical Aid UAMedWish International, and Health Partners International of Canada, increasing access to medical care and ensuring there is adequate supply for the country’s health sector.

Airlink also continues to support passenger movement for NGO personnel, medical volunteers, logistics experts, and additional programmatic staff. Empact Northwest, International Ministry of Charity Emmanuel, and Friends of Disabled Adults and Children volunteers delivered medical supplies, provided healthcare, and distributed food aid and basic supplies to IDP populations in Ukraine. In eastern Ukraine, volunteers with Global Outreach Doctors continue to provide frontline, emergency trauma care to civilians impacted by increased air strikes. As the war continues, refugees remain in neighboring countries such as Poland. Medical personnel with International Medical Relief continue to support refugees, providing medical care to those displaced.

Haiti – Complex Crisis & Cholera Outbreak

Response

Haiti continues to grapple with insecurity, food insecurity, internal displacement, and the cholera epidemic. Response capabilities by humanitarian organizations are complicated by security concerns and logistical constraints. Airlink is supporting the transportation of relief supplies on behalf of responding humanitarian organizations. This month, a shipment of neonatal vitamins arrived that will reach over 70,000 mothers, improving maternal and child health across Haiti. In addition, thanks for first-mile support from UPS Foundation, Airlink moved 31 pallets of Family Emergency kits containing water filtration supplies on behalf of GlobalMedic. Airlink continues to operate the Haiti Airbridge Program in collaboration with USAID/BHA, and in January, coordinated two additional charter flights containing a total of 93 tons of relief supplies on behalf of CARE Haiti, Food for the PoorHealth Equity InternationalIMA World Health, and Partners In Health. The program enabled the distribution of health supplies, lactated ringers, vaccination kits, water filtration supplies, and food for cholera patients to reach responding agencies. Airlink is thankful for the partnership of American AirlinesUPS Foundation, and SEKO Logistics for providing critical airlift, transportation, and coordination support to the airbridge program.

Mexico – U.S. Border Crisis

Response

With tens of thousands of asylum seekers awaiting their immigration proceedings are in need of healthcare services along the US-Mexico border. Thanks to the continued support of United Airlines, Airlink coordinated flights for seven medical volunteers on behalf of Global Disaster Response and Humanitarian Action. The volunteers continue to provide healthcare to asylum-seeking populations needing primary and urgent medical care in border communities.

Palestine – Complex Crisis / Health Systems Strengthening

Preparedness

The complex crisis in Palestine has left residents in occupied territories without access to live-saving medicines and has inhibited the import and distribution of medicines for chronic and communicable diseases. In response to this need, Airlink coordinated a shipment of critically needed medicines to the West Bank including antibiotics and essential vitamins on behalf of Health Partners International of Canada with Air Canada. 500 Palestinian refugees received needed medications.

Lebanon – Complex Crisis / Health Systems Strengthening

Preparedness

Lebanon has been enduring a crippling financial crisis since the 2020 Beirut explosion. The World Bank has named it one of the worst financial crises in centuries as it continues to fuel unemployment, hunger, and inhibited access to healthcare and essential medicines. In partnership with the United Palestinian Appeal and thanks to free-of-charge airlift from Qatar Airways Cargo, Airlink facilitated the transport of medicines and nutritional supplements that aided thousands of people.

Louisiana, USA – Hurricane Ida

Long-term Recovery

Airlink continues to support Hurricane Ida recovery programs with NGO partners International Orthodox Christian Charities and NECHAMA. Thanks to the support of United Airlines, Airlink provided flights to 9 volunteers who supported rebuilding services and mental health initiatives.

Kentucky, USA – Tornadoes

Long-term Recovery

In partnership with United Airlines and American AirlinesAirlink supported NGO partners Missions on WheelsInformation Technology Disaster Resource CenterInspiritus, and Habitat for Humanity with flights for 30 volunteers. The response in Florida has shifted toward long term recovery but partners continue providing cleanup and rebuilding services, housing for responders, and emergency connectivity.

Florida, USA – Hurricane Ian

Recovery

In partnership with United Airlines and American Airlines, Airlink supported NGO partners Missions on WheelsInformation Technology Disaster Resource CenterInspiritus, and Habitat for Humanity with flights for 30 volunteers. The response in Florida has shifted toward long term recovery but partners continue providing cleanup and rebuilding services, housing for responders, and emergency connectivity.

Texas, USA – Disaster Preparedness 

Preparedness

Natural disasters across the US, including floods, tornadoes, and wildfires, require the mobilization of first responders and disaster relief preparedness initiatives. Airlink supported flights for Operation BBQ Relief’s mock disaster training for volunteers and leaders. This training will allow for smoother movement of personnel, equipment, product and processing in times of disaster. This was possible thanks to ongoing support from United Airlines and Southwest Airlines.

Uganda – Health Systems Strengthening

Response

Airlink continues to support health systems strengthening efforts in Uganda alongside We Care Solar. With free of charge airlift from Qatar Airways Cargo, Airlink coordinated cargo movement of over 180 solar suitcases and required solar equipment which will be utilized to power health facilities, ensuring access to safe medical care.

Sierra Leone – Health Systems Strengthening

Response

30,000 people in Mofinko, Sierra Leone are only served by one medical clinic. Last month, Airlink coordinated passenger travel for International Mutual Aid medical volunteers to ensure that the population can access comprehensive healthcare services. Thanks to Brussels Airlines and United Airlines, four volunteers traveled to Mofinko to sustain local capacity and continue education and training initiatives.

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