Many of you have been following the events of Nepal and its recent earthquake in the news. One of the challenges of any relief effort is logistics-supplieshaving trouble getting through customs and people in the remote areas not being helped. Here is a recent articles on the subject.
MAF does not have a program in Nepal but we do have a disaster response division. Currently we have two men, one of which use to fly here, there assessing the situation. Here is an excerpt from a recent email that we are allowed to share.
At this time we are not planning to send in any MAF aircraft but it has become clear that there is a real need for logistical support which MAF has the skills and experience to provide. It has therefore
been agreed that MAF will now join the relief effort in a logistical capacity in the first instance to work at Kathmandu airport to assist airport authorities and organisations like the World Food Programme and UNHAS
with ramp management and planning, cargo handling and helping smaller NGOs with warehousing logistics and co-ordination.
There also appears to be an increasingly urgent need for a co-ordinated light helicopter response. This would potentially be aimed at providing a passenger service for humanitarian relief workers
especially to get them out to the more isolated and higher altitude communities which so far many agencies have been unable to reach. The Disaster Response Team are assessing the possibility of setting up/co-ordinating a light helicopter response facility. Initial discussions have indicated it may be difficult to bring in external helicopters to Nepal but that it may be better to commission local helicopters to do this work. The team will continue to look at the options and feasibility of this and we will keep you updated. The team have already arranged their first set of flights for the UK government DFID (Department for International Development) to enable medics and an international search and rescue team to get out to a location which was only 20 nautical miles from Kathmandu and did not initially look that remote but the situation out there is absolutely desperate and it would take 3.5 hours of driving and 8 hours trek on foot.
This week three to five more people from other MAF programs will be coming to Nepal to help with the relief effort. As you pray for the people of Nepal, pray that the Nepalese, especially those in the remote areas, will get the help they need. Pray for wisdom for our disaster relief guys as they help with logistics.