Navigation and Content

GoHelp: When disaster strikes

In the wake of a natural disaster, getting relief goods quickly into the affected areas can be a matter of life and death. GoHelp aims to leverage our logistics expertise to help streamline the flow of incoming aid.

On December 26, 2003, a 6.6-magnitude earthquake devastated the Iranian city of Bam. In the immediate aftermath, countries and organizations worldwide flew tons of relief aid into the country. Because the small provincial airport was not designed to cope with the sudden rise in incoming air traffic carrying pallets of relief supplies, operations came to a standstill.

We realized there was a disconnect between the logistics and humanitarian communities, and many relief organizations needed airfield logistics expertise. Working with UN agencies and NGOs, we developed solutions to support disaster relief logistics - and our GoHelp program was born.

Why we GoHelp

Natural disasters are a fact of life, but airport bottlenecks don't have to be. Logistics is what we do best, and our people want to help - so it just makes sense to utilize our expertise and leverage our global network to support and improve relief efforts around the world.

Since 2004, we've been deploying teams of logistics experts to affected airports worldwide when called upon by the United Nations. If we can reduce the negative impact of a natural event and help communities recover more quickly, then we've done our job. And that's something we can be proud of.

How we GoHelp

At the global level, GoHelp is divided into two complementary functions: disaster response and disaster preparedness.

Our Disaster Response Teams (DRTs) deploy to airports in need when called upon by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). Our Get Airports Ready for Disaster (GARD) program collaborates with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) to prepare airport personnel and local disaster management organizations to better manage a surge in incoming relief goods.

Disaster Response

900+ specially trained employee volunteers make up three strategically based DRTs ready to deploy at a moment's notice.

Disaster Preparedness

Our GARD trainers conduct multi-day workshops at airports worldwide to help participants prepare for the logistics challenges of disaster relief.

GoHelp also includes public-private partnerships with international and regional humanitarian organizations, including the World Food Program (WFP), to improve humanitarian logistics and supply chain operations.

At the local level, colleagues around the world have organized teams of volunteers who are willing and able to get out and GoHelp when disaster strikes nearby.

The impact of GoHelp

Strategically located around the world, our DRTs cover 80% of the world's disaster hot spots.

  • Team Singapore is responsible for the Asia Pacific region
  • Team Panama handles deployments to Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Team Dubai covers the Middle East and Africa
  • Team Germany covers Europe

Each DRT is ready to deploy in their region and be operational on location within 72 hours. With a good mix of logistics experts across all DHL divisions, including airside, warehouse, and supply chain specialists, our DRTs can support any part of the logistics process to help keep airports operational and relief aid flowing.

55+

DRT deployments

1,700

PEOPLE TRAINED BY OUR GARD INSTRUCTORS

60+

GARD workshops

Our DRTs have deployed dozens of times across all three regions. Our GARD instructors have trained more than 1,700 people at 60+ workshops in 29 countries. Each deployment provides an opportunity to learn - and that knowledge is continually passed on in routine training sessions.

Together with OCHA and UNDP, GoHelp demonstrates the power of public-private partnerships and how essential they are in today's world to address humanitarian needs.

Our worldwide disaster management activities