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The Vodafone Group Foundation and United Nations Foundation technology partnership joins World Food Programme

Summary

The Vodafone Group Foundation and United Nations Foundation technology partnership joins World Food Programme to improve communications during humanitarian crises

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), The Vodafone Group Foundation, and the United Nations Foundation announced today a ground-breaking ‘global partnership for emergency communications’. The partnership will increase the effectiveness of the information and communications technology (ICT) response to major emergencies and disasters around the world.

The partnership – which includes a $4.3 million commitment from The Vodafone Group Foundation-United Nations Foundation technology partnership as well as a further $1.8 million contribution from the WFP – will develop the first-ever ICT training programme which will be open to the global community of humanitarian relief organisations. “Over the next three years, this partnership will contribute to our work to help save millions of lives. Better telecommunications mean we can respond faster and more efficiently, with much greater access to those in urgent need," said Josette Sheeran, WFP’s Executive Director. She added that WFP was greatly encouraged that The Vodafone Group Foundation and UN Foundation recognised that telecommunications are essential to food aid convoys, aircraft and medical teams delivering vital relief assistance. The focus of the partnership will be to standardise ICT solutions used by global aid organisations to improve the speed with which critical communications networks can be established in the immediate aftermath of a humanitarian crisis. Over the next three years, the programme will also: • expand the pool of trained ICT experts on WFP and other UN and NGO staff to more than 500 first responders • support the immediate deployment of rapid response ICT teams.