Disaster Response Teams provide emergency relief
In cooperation with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), we have established a network of over 400 trained DHL employees who serve in our Disaster Response Teams (DRT) on a volunteer basis. We have three regional DRTs located in Dubai (for deployment in the Middle East and Africa), Panama (Americas) and Singapore (Asia Pacific). When called upon by the UN, DRTs can be deployed to disaster areas within a maximum of 72 hours and provide free and immediate logistics support at main relief airports. DRT volunteers lend their logistics expertise to coordinating incoming relief supplies, preparing goods for further transport and ensuring delivery to the responsible relief organizations.
Since the launch of the partnership with UNOCHA, DRTs have been deployed over 39 times around the world – most recently to Haiti in the wake of Hurricane Matthew in October, after the severe earthquake in Ecuador in April and after Cyclone Winston struck Fiji in February 2016.
We provide regular follow-up training to make sure our DRT volunteers are prepared for the extraordinary demands of such deployments. In 2016 over 100 employees took part in these training events, and in 2017, we plan to conduct at least one training in each of the three DRT deployment regions.
Coordinated arrival of relief workers
In 2016 the United Nations requested that we take on an additional role in the area of disaster relief. DHL volunteers who are not members of a DRT will provide support to the UN’s Reception and Departure Desk which manages incoming relief workers at airports. The job of our volunteers will be to supply incoming relief workers with the information they need most so that they can exit the terminal and reach their deployment sites as quickly as possible. We have developed a training concept for this new role and have already used it to train the first group of DHL employees in Asia.