What We Do:

Disaster Relief Communications

Disaster Relief Communications

When disasters strike, people need food, shelter, blankets, and medicine. But without an effective communications network, supplies are left undelivered, and relief workers are unable to do their jobs.

The United Nations Foundation and Vodafone Foundation Partnership helps emergency relief workers respond more quickly and effectively and reconnects families separated by disaster. The partnership supports the UN World Food Programme (WFP), the UN’s lead agency tasked with security communications in disaster response, and Télécoms Sans Frontières (TSF), a humanitarian NGO that deploys lifesaving mobile and satellite technology for UN relief missions. Both groups can deploy to anywhere in the world within 48 hours.

In 2009, the WFP aimed to feed around 100 million people in 80 countries, supported by a wide range of experts and volunteers. In addition, the UN Foundation funds Vodafone employees to work directly with the WFP in their field offices.

With UN Foundation and Vodafone Foundation funding, WFP and TSF teams provide vital telecommunication support to the UN and other humanitarian agencies during emergencies. View some examples of these recent deployments by exploring the interactive map below.

To view a full list of deployments since 2006, click here.

Click and drag your mouse over the map to view other regions.

View Larger Map

The UN Foundation and Vodafone Foundation Technology Partnership has taken its commitment to supporting WFP’s emergency communications capacity in disaster response one step further through the Vodafone Foundation’s “World of Difference” program. In June 2009, this program placed four Vodafone employees in WFP offices around the world, adding human capital to the Technology Partnership’s overall support for WFP’s vital services in emergencies.


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    Mobile Activism: Make Text, Not War

    Area of Involvement: Technology


    When waves of political violence swept through Kenya after the December 2007 presidential election, human rights advocates in the country turned to cell phones to help stem the violence. 


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    Connecting in the Midst of a Disaster

    Area of Involvement: Technology


    Heavy flooding along Mozambique’s Zambezi River displaced nearly 300,000 Mozambicans from their homes in early 2008. Water levels were so high that resettlement camps from a 2007 flooding had to be resettled again.


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    Issue Area: Technology

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    Issue Area: Technology

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