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Satellite Operators Train Humanitarian Responders with the United Nations

By | May 31, 2016
      International Humanitarian City

      An International Humanitarian City facility. Photo: International Humanitarian City

      [Via Satellite 05-31-2016] This week in Dubai, experts from Arabsat, EMC, Eutelsat, Hispasat, Inmarsat, Intelsat, SES, Thuraya and Yahsat are conducting technical training for humanitarian personnel to support the provision of communications to all those responding to emergencies. The training seeks to provide responders within the World Food Program (WFP)-led Emergency Telecommunications Cluster (ETC) with the skills and experience to deploy, manage and support satellite solutions during humanitarian emergency operations.

      This course is the first activity emanating from the Crisis Connectivity Charter, a set of commitments to enhance communications in times of crises, which satellite operators and members of the integrator community signed with the United Nations in October 2015. The EMEA Satellite Operators’ Association (ESOA) and the Global VSAT Forum (GVF) established the charter with the support of the ETC and the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

      The Fast IT and Telecommunications Emergency and Support Team (FITTEST) —WFP’s IT emergency response capacity — and ETC member Ericsson Response will participate in the course, along with 12 trainers. The training course will be held at the WFP warehouses in International Humanitarian City.

      “The charter aims to offer coordinated, end-to-end and fully redundant satellite communication solutions for the humanitarian community. However, to ensure it is effective, first responders must know how to set-up and operate the different types of equipment available. Satellite operators regularly carry out free-of-charge training, both first-hand and via online tools, as part of our commitment to improving emergency communications,” said Simon Gray, VP of humanitarian affairs at Eutelsat and group coordinator for the Crisis Connectivity Charter for ESOA and GVF.