40 ATW | March 2019 | atwonline.com
can mean the difference between life and death.
Airlink works to ensure its humanitarian partners
meet as few logistical obstacles as possible, coordinating
with supply chain professionals like Flexport to ensure
total compliance with airline and in-country requirements and regulations for a seamless delivery.
“Humanitarian logistics is incredibly complex,” Air-
link president and CEO Steven Smith said. “We all see
so much need in the world, but the process of actually
getting items to the necessary places takes logistical ex-
pertise and coordinated partnerships.”
In South Sudan, for example, a Kenya Airways Boe-
ing 737 landed at Juba International Airport carrying
seven pallets containing thousands of antibiotics, anti-
viral and anti-parasitic medications, and vitamins. Te
medicines were distributed to operations across the
country to treat hundreds of thousands of South Suda-
nese people in need of medical care. Long before they
were ever to reach their patients, they first had to make
the journey from manufacturer, to warehouse, to air-
port, to implementing organization.
Te logistics of delivering aid to South Sudan were
highly complicated, but Airlink and its partners accepted the challenge with the common goal of delivering aid to those in need. Humanitarian organizations
Tearfund and International Health Partners UK procured $200,000 worth of medical supplies to be used
by International Medical Corps in South Sudan. A long-time partner of Airlink, International Medical Corps
requested assistance from Airlink in moving this critical
shipment of medical supplies to Juba.
In a very different example, Airlink worked with mass
feeding organization Operation BBQ Relief (OBR) and
Signature Lead Partner United Airlines during the historic wildfires that spread across California in 2017 and
2018. Together, they flew OBR staff into California so
they could distribute hundreds of thousands of meals to
people made homeless by the disasters.
“Our partnership means we can effectively and effi-
ciently move our leaders and operations experts around
the country in a disaster, focusing on what we do—serv-
ing hot BBQ meals,” OBR CMO David Marks said.
“We can let Airlink, as the experts in disaster response
logistics, do their thing while we focus on ours.”
When Hurricane Florence moved toward North Car-
olina, Airlink and OBR received help from United, its
employees and MileagePlus members.
“We sent one OBR volunteer in ahead of the storm,”
humanitarian programs manager Stephanie Steege said.
“Tey’re capable of feeding tens of thousands of people
in a few days and we knew they could have the most im-
pact if they were in position ahead of the storm.”
“In the aftermath of a disaster, every second
counts as medical professionals treat patients suffer-
ing from critical injuries,” MedShare CEO Charles
Airlink airline partners include Aer Lingus, Aero-mexico, AirAsia, Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, AmeriJet, Arrow Cargo, Atlas Air, ATX,
Avianca, British Airways, Brussels Airlines, Cathay
Pacific Airways, Centurion Cargo, Copa Airlines,
DHL, Emirates Sky Cargo, Ethiopian Airlines, Etihad
Airlines, Flexport, Hawaiian Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Kalitta Air, Kenya Airways, KLM, Lufthansa
Cargo, Nippon Cargo Airlines, Omni Air International, Philippine Airlines, Royal Air Maroc, Royal Jordanian Airlines, Silk Air, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, Spirit Airlines, TAP Air Portugal, TNT
Express, Turkish Airlines, United Airlines, UPS and
Western Global Airlines.
In the aftermath of a disaster, every second counts.