After suffering the devastating consequences of Matthew’s hurricane last week, Haiti fell to pieces. Houses, roads, facilities, it all demolished.
Humanitarian aid was a first necessity for those living in cities and rural areas affected by the climatic phenomena. All NGO’s and ONU had to rebuild its own headquarters in the place, even The Red Cross was homeless in Port au Prince. All those situations called for exterior aid to come and supply locals with first aid goods; clean water, food and medicine. However, they faced a huge handicap; There were a lot of logistic restrictions in the area and the physical infrastructures to receive, classify and distribute the commodities were null.
The main harbors in Haiti were inoperable and ships ready to distribute humanitarian social assistance could not unload, thus having to go to the Dominican Republic, and distributing by truck.
“In front of such a difficult situation an international and common platform was needed” Miguel Mauricio Manjarrés, Chief manager of Deprisa Logistics stated.
Indeed the multinational in logistics DHL, with the support of ONU, volunteered his help and expertise in the field.
With the specialized division on such situations, the Disaster Response Team (DRT) they operated from the international airport of Haiti in order to organize the entry, flow and exit of all the goods. Distributing them to other non profit organizations in the place to give them to the more needed families. Division of tasks and labor was necessary, DRT organized and planned while smaller organizations distributed, accordingly to the plan, to people.
“The DRT was created to respond in front of devastation situations such as Haiti. All the members are trained to respond and provide a practical and effective support to the people in moments of extreme need” states Chis Weeks director of humanitarian section of DHL.
All in all, by reading the article is clear that in such dramatic and difficult situation having the ability to build a fast and efficient logistic network is a matter of major importance. There might be cases in which one more day without basic goods would mean real struggle or even death.
Moreover, this article shows the importance of private initiatives of companies to give support in natural disasters, and chaotic situations.
I invite you to read the full article (for those who can understand Spanish) as it explains in a more detailed way the information provided above.
- http://revistadelogistica.com/actualidad/haiti-logistica-de-una-tragedia/ , Haití, logística de una tragedia by Daniel Fernando Polanía