Year in Review 2019

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Logistics Cluster Website

The Logistics Cluster

enables global, regional and local actors to meet humanitarian needs. Before crises, we work with stakeholders in high risk countries and regions to strengthen local logistics capacities. In crises, where these capacities have been exceeded, we provide leadership, coordination, information and operational services.

Globally, the Logistics Cluster is a community of partners actively working to overcome logistics constraints, and to develop and share best practices and solutions.

The cluster approach was adopted in 2005 as a result of the Humanitarian Reform process launched by the United Nations Emergency Relief Coordinator, through the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC). The reform process focused on strengthening coordination and accountability and enhancing partnerships in key sectors, including logistics.

Because of its expertise in humanitarian logistics and its field capacity, the United Nations World Food Programme was chosen by the IASC to be the lead agency of the Logistics Cluster. In this role, when necessary, WFP acts as a provider of last resort, offering common logistics services to all humanitarian responders.

The Logistics Cluster leverages its network of active partners to best fill critical logistics gaps. When local infrastructure is severely damaged or inaccessible and local capacities have been exceeded, WFP, as the lead agency of the cluster, acts as a provider of last resort, offering assets and services to humanitarian responders to enable them to reach affected populations. The Logistics Cluster coordinates access to common transport services (road, river, sea and air), storage facilities and fuel provided by WFP or any organisation with relevant, available capacity.

The Logistics Cluster is key to ensuring an efficient humanitarian response, reducing duplication of humanitarian efforts and saving costs.

foreword

Athalie

Every page of the Logistics Cluster 2019 report is a testament to the power of partnership. From Rumbek to Rome, Gonaives to Geneva, Ngala to New York, the strength of the Logistics Cluster community shines through. Whether working together in the field to find timely ways to transport life-saving cargo or brainstorming together to define a multi-year humanitarian logistics strategy, everyone has played their part. It has only been possible to find practical, timely logistics solutions to help our less fortunate fellows to overcome increasing adversity, because the Logistics Cluster is able to draw power from its diversity. The Logistics Cluster is not an elite members-only club but an inclusive team of partners united by a common goal. Each partner brings whatever they have: resources, experience, innovation, local knowledge. When this is combined with the common energy generated by collaboration and commitment, we have a recipe for effective and efficient action.

In the following pages, and through the words of the partners themselves, you will read about a humbling and inspiring range of activities. It is not possible to single out one operation over another but the Mozambique response provided a clear example of how the Logistics Cluster worked together. In the words of our outgoing Global Coordinator, Stephen Cahill, this was possible as the Logistics Cluster is “...very diverse, pulling together a team from different parts of the world...”

As we enter the “Decade of Action” the need to pull together as one is stronger than ever. The 2019 Annual Report gives us great hope that this it is within our reach to make a difference if we continue to work together. A huge thanks to everyone for their friendship, collaboration and unity of purpose.

- Athalie Mayo
Global Logistics Cluster Coordinator

Global Strategic Advisory Group

The Global Strategic Advisory Group (GSAG) was created in 2016 to foster shared ownership of the Logistics Cluster through representing the community of partners and providing strategic guidance to the Global Logistics Cluster Support Team.

For me, it’s really a privilege and a responsibility to represent my peers’ views in the GSAG, and to help steer the Logistics Cluster for the benefit of all partners.

- Mary Jelliti, Logistics and Procurement Manager, GOAL

2019 was a year of translating vision and ambitions into workplans and concrete guidance. The GSAG held two face-to-face meetings and eleven teleconferences, providing guidance and leadership across a range of topics including Global Logistics Meetings and the Logistics Cluster Strategy. It revised the terms of reference of both the GSAG itself and the Logistics Cluster Global Working Groups, both of which were presented to and endorsed by the community of partners.

With the GSAG we try to support the Global Cell in Rome with the strategic views of the partners.

- Theo Lingens, Deputy Head of Logistics Division, German Federal Agency for Technical Relief (THW)

Anyone can utilise the GSAG as their representative body to put issues on the Logistics Cluster agenda. The members can be contacted through sag-logs@logcluster.org

GSAG Composition

Recent changes to the GSAG composition include the addition of Deputy Head of Logistics Division for the German Federal Agency for Technical Relief (THW), Theo Lingens, as new governmental organisation representative; Logistics Cluster Coordinator in the Central African Republic, Katja Hildebrand, as Field Cluster Coordinator representative; Global Logistics Cluster Coordinator Athalie Mayo as fixed chair; and Logistics and Procurement Manager for GOAL, Mary Jelliti, as NGO representative.

More information about the GSAG and its full composition can be found here.

2019 in NUMBERS

15 Operations 1,736 Information updates POSTED ON LOGCLUSTER.ORG 3,540 Service Request Forms processed
52 INTER-AGENCY HUMANITARIAN CONVOYS Coordinated BY ROAD AND RIVER facilitated the delivery of 32,246 MT facilitated the common storage of 149,975 m3 of HUMANITARIAN CARGO
2019 partners bar chart

DIGITAL PRESENCE

Awareness comes from information - when and where you need it

529,295 Page views
37% of which were operational documents
over 2.45 million SOCIAL MEDIA REACH
766,730 LOGISTICS CAPACITY ASSESSMENt webpage views 57,200 Reactions

Global Meetings

Together for the best response

Dubai

9-11 April 41 Participants From 31 stakeholders

Dublin

24-26 September 60 Participants From 42 stakeholders
52 stakeholders ACROSS THE TWO MEETINGS

Training

Building a common approach – train together, respond together

296 organisations trained
2,245 people trained
113 Trainings 15 trainings at global level 98 trainings at field level

Preparedness

Thinking ahead saves time, lives and money

9 ACTIVE COUNTRIES Bangladesh, Lao PDR, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Iraq, Philippines, Haiti, South Sudan 1 active region Pacific (12 countries) 21 workshops & trainings 728 participants 312 stakeholders engaged 19 locations

Deployments

Response capacity when it’s needed the most

20 GLC staff deployed 33 deployments 806 days 20 countries

2019 Operations

At the field level the Logistics Cluster is responsible for coordination and information management (IM) of the logistics response. When necessary, the Logistics Cluster also coordinates access to common logistics services facilitating the delivery and storage of supplies.

2019 Operations
  • Bangladesh
  • Cameroon
  • Central African Republic
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Haiti
  • Iraq
  • Libya
  • Malawi
  • Mozambique
  • Nigeria
  • South Sudan
  • Syria
  • Venezuela
  • Yemen
  • Zimbabwe

Complex emergency

Bangladesh

September 2017

Logistics Sector Activation
People icon 1.2 million people in need of humanitarian assistance
People icon 67 Organisations Supported
People icon 103 IM updates published
People icon 32 Coordination meetings
House icon 12,290 m3 Storage
Alexandra Parisien, Bangladesh

Bangladesh

Since August 2017, an estimated 745,000 Rohingya have fled from Myanmar’s Rakhine state into Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh. In 2019, the government-led response targeted 1.2 million people in need of humanitarian assistance, including a previously existing refugee population and local host communities. In an area with high risk of natural disasters, the size and complexity of the operation requires a well-integrated and coherent inter-agency response.

Throughout 2019, the Logistics Sector in Bangladesh supported 67 humanitarian and governmental organisations with coordination, information management and facilitation of access to common logistics services such as storage.

Partnerships between universities and humanitarian workers can generate knowledge and learning for both. Academics can disseminate the results of their research through training, as well as apply their knowledge to help humanitarian workers in solving real problems.

- Professor Irineu de Brito Jr. from the São Paulo State University and researcher from the Center of Innovation of Logistics System from University of São Paulo

With availability of sufficient storage identified by partners as a critical logistics gap for the response, the Logistics Sector facilitated access to free-to-user common storage at three logistics hubs – Madhu Chara and Balukhali, provided by WFP, and at Leda, Teknaf, provided by Humanity and Inclusion/Atlas Logistique. Six temperature-controlled 20-foot shipping containers were also made available to the humanitarian community for the storage of temperature-sensitive items such as pharmaceuticals. The Logistics Sector maintained a stock of prepositioned containers and Mobile Storage Units (MSUs) available for partners. In total, 12,290 m3 of relief items were received for storage on behalf of 24 partner organisations in 2019.

Coordination between partners continued to be paramount to the humanitarian operation. The Logistics Sector conducted regular coordination meetings and co-chaired Health Logistics inter-sector coordination meetings with the Health Sector. The meetings provided a forum for partners to raise issues that impacted their ability to respond such as traffic control, roads management and storage constraints. Where deemed appropriate, the Logistics Sector then advocated for solutions to the issues raised on behalf of the community. In total, 32 coordination meetings and health logistics meetings were held over the course of the year.

Information remained key to the response, and the Logistics Sector worked closely with partners to collect and share logistics information to improve operational decision-making. In 2019, 103 information updates were published on a dedicated webpage and five assessments were carried out together with partners to inform the sector response. 2019 also saw the roll-out of a pilot of the Physical Roads Access Constraints (PRAC) application, allowing the humanitarian community to share and see near real-time updates on physical road access constraints in one centralised platform.

Capacity building remained a focus of the Logistics Sector in Bangladesh. A total of 10 trainings were held on topics ranging from the basics of humanitarian logistics, advance logistics training, to MSU erection, cyclone preparedness and a simulation-based workshop held as part of the Global Logistics Cluster’s Preparedness Project. A total of 233 humanitarians from 50 organisations participated in these events which also benefitted from perspectives beyond the humanitarian community through collaboration and exchanges with academia and the commercial sector in relevant areas of expertise.

With the ever-present threat of cyclones and monsoons adding a layer of complexity to the humanitarian response, flexibility and strong emergency preparedness planning remained important. The Logistics Sector met with partners on preparedness activities throughout the year and made contingency stock available to partners during cyclone and monsoon season, including containers and asset protection boxes.

US$2.8 million requirement
100%
funded

Complex emergency

Central African Republic (CAR)

November 2013

Logistics Cluster Activation
People icon 2.6 million people in need of humanitarian assistance
People icon 106 Organisations Supported
People icon 124 IM updates published
People icon 22 Coordination meetings
Truck icon 2,592 mt Road transport
Plane icon 268 mt Air transport
House icon 7,074 m3 Storage
Central African Republic

Central African Republic (CAR)

In 2019, CAR was the third-largest humanitarian crisis in the world, with 2.6 million people in need of humanitarian assistance, 1.7 million of whom were in acute need. The Logistics Cluster has been active in the country since 2013, supporting responding humanitarian organisations who face logistics constraints, poor infrastructure and ongoing insecurity which impede their ability to deliver humanitarian assistance.

In 2019, the Logistics Cluster worked closely with partners in-country to provide coordination and information management, and to facilitate access to common services such as storage, road and air transport.

Working together allows the humanitarian community to pool skills and costs for a tailored logistics response adapted to the needs of the populations. The Logistics Cluster in CAR has been attentive and responsive to urgent operational needs linked to emergency humanitarian activities, including in the far and secluded North East region of the Vakaga where Triangle (TGH) is active.

- François Flor Soares, Coordinateur Terrain Vakaga, Triangle Génération Humanitaire, Central African Republic

Demonstrating the spirit of the Logistics Cluster, common storage was made available to the humanitarian community in nine locations across the country via a group of partners. A concrete common storage warehouse was managed by Première Urgence Internationale in Bangui, and other NGO partners were responsible for managing Mobile Storage Units in eight other locations. This totals 4,000 m2 of common storage space that was available to humanitarian organisations in-country, with a total of 7,074 m3 of humanitarian cargo stored over the course of the year. Complementing this, Humanity and Inclusion provides a common road transport service for relief items from Bangui, Bambari and Bossangoa, with 2,592 mt of humanitarian cargo transported on behalf of 27 organisations in 2019.

Following an escalation of violence in Birao, a remote area in the far north of CAR, the Logistics Cluster increased support to partners operating in the area by facilitating access to airlifts for life-saving cargo, thus reducing lead times dramatically. This was done in parallel to airlifts for priority cargo such as health, WASH and nutrition items to hard-to-reach areas in the east and south-east of the country, such as Zemio, Obo, Bangassou and Bria. Over the course of the year, the cluster facilitated 66 air rotations to 7 locations, transporting 268 mt of emergency relief items on behalf of 22 organisations.

To find sustainable solutions, infrastructure rehabilitation was a major focus of humanitarian organisations working in-country in 2019. Over 40 rehabilitation projects targeting airstrips, roads, bridges and ferries were undertaken by national and international NGOs, based on the Logistics Cluster’s gaps analysis, to improve access for both humanitarian organisations carrying out their important work and local populations.

The coordination role undertaken by the Logistics Cluster is a key element in the humanitarian response, helping to reduce costs, create synergies, and avoid duplication of efforts. To this end, 22 Logistics Cluster coordination meetings were held in Bangui, and sub-office logistics working group meetings were organised to maintain an open discussion forum to improve the analysis of logistical needs. In addition, the cluster was an active member of the Inter-Cluster Coordination mechanism, the Civil-Military Coordination Forum and the Access Working Group, all chaired by OCHA, as well as the UNICEF-led Rapid Response Mechanism Steering Committee.

US$1.8 million requirement
100%
funded

Complex emergency

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO (DRC)

November 2008

Logistics Cluster Activation
People icon 12.8 million people in need of humanitarian assistance
People icon 203 Organisations Supported
People icon 237 IM updates published
People icon 55 Coordination meetings
DRC

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO (DRC)

In 2019, ongoing insecurity and a continuing outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) contributed to a continued volatile humanitarian situation in DRC. With 12.8 million people in need of humanitarian assistance, humanitarian organisations operated in an extremely challenging and complex environment, facing access challenges and limited logistics infrastructure. The Logistics Cluster worked with a total of 203 organisations across the country, providing key coordination and information management services as well as advocating for urgent infrastructure rehabilitation projects throughout the year.

Humanitarians working on the response in DRC are facing major access constraints across an area that is the largest country in sub-Saharan Africa. Timely and accurate logistics information provided through the Logistics Cluster is critical to strengthen operational decision-making. In 2019, a total of 237 information management updates were published on a dedicated webpage, including 97 maps detailing accessibility and other general logistics information.

We really like that the Logistics Cluster provides information management and we particularly use the cluster maps for our operations. We also really appreciate the dynamic in the working groups where we can reflect and exchange on the challenges we are facing together with the partner organisations.

- Julien Lescop, Systems Director, Concern Worldwide, Goma

Effective information sharing and coordination is also crucial to avoid duplication of efforts and to capitalise on the collective presence. The Logistics Cluster continued to work with the humanitarian community throughout the country and held 55 coordination meetings across the seven locations of Kinshasa, Goma, Bukavu, Ituri, Tshikapa, Kananga and Kalemie, where humanitarian organisations could exchange information on logistics issues and challenges. In 2019, a new mechanism was established to co-facilitate the country-level meetings in Kinshasa with an NGO. Humanity and Inclusion took up the role as the first NGO co-facilitator in-country.

The lack of a reliable road network across the country complicated the humanitarian response and led to high operating costs. The Logistics Cluster continued to advocate on behalf of the humanitarian community for the rehabilitation of roads and bridges as a means to improving humanitarian access both in the short and long term.

A total of 51 rehabilitation projects were carried out by Logistics Cluster partners over the year, including project EMIR and the rehabilitation of 1,200 kilometres of road and the runway of Tshikapa airport.

US$2.5 million requirement
100%
funded

Natural disaster

Malawi

March 2019

Logistics Sector Activation
People icon 870,000 people in need of humanitarian assistance
People icon 31 Organisations Supported
People icon 55 IM updates published
People icon 9 Coordination meetings
Truck icon 1,305 mt Road transport
People icon 1,761 m3 Storage
Malawi

Malawi

In early March, a severe weather system formed off the eastern coast of Mozambique, bringing heavy rains and strong winds to southern Malawi, before tracking back to the Mozambique channel. Here it intensified into Cyclone Idai which made landfall in Mozambique on 14 March, continuing to Malawi where it impacted approximately 870,000 people and caused significant infrastructure damage to the country’s south (OCHA). The Logistics Sector, co-led by WFP and the Malawian Ministry of Transport and Public Works (MoTPW), assisted the humanitarian community in their efforts to deliver life-saving items to affected areas through coordination, information sharing and facilitation of access to common logistics services.

The Logistics Cluster is always the first port of call when a disaster strikes, and Cyclone Idai was no exception. In Malawi, the facilitation of logistics common services was integral to the efficiency and timeliness of ShelterBox's response, while regular sector meetings provided an open platform for partners to share operational plans, discuss logistics constraints, and problem-solve solutions.

- Frances Walker, Logistics & Procurement Coordinator, ShelterBox

The Logistics Sector facilitated access to common logistics services for the government and responding humanitarian organisations. A total of 1,761 m3 of relief items were received for storage in five locations throughout the country. As water levels fell and road conditions improved, the Logistics Sector facilitated road transport of 1,305 mt of lifesaving humanitarian cargo.

Due to both the isolated nature of some affected communities and the impact of heavy rains on road infrastructure, the Logistics Sector also facilitated transport of 3 mt of relief items by boats positioned in Bangula and Chikwawa. In addition, transport of 129 humanitarian passengers to areas cut-off by road was facilitated on WFP-chartered boats.

Over the course of the response, the Logistics Sector held nine coordination meetings out of a dedicated coordination cell in Blantyre, providing an information and coordination platform to emergency responders from 31 organisations (including the Department of Disaster Management Affairs, MoTPW, line ministries, NGOs and UN agencies). The Logistics Sector also published a total of 55 information management updates via a dedicated webpage.

As the situation improved, the Logistics Sector transferred all the core sector functions to the National Disaster Management Office and phased out of facilitation of common logistics services. With support from the Global Logistics Cluster, preparedness initiatives were rolled out following the Cyclone Idai emergency operation, aiming to strengthen global-regional-local networks, capacities and collaboration before, during and after emergencies.

CLOSED
OPERATION

Natural disaster

Mozambique

March 2019

Logistics Cluster Activation
People icon 2.2 million people in need of humanitarian assistance
People icon 102 Organisations Supported
People icon 127 IM updates published
People icon 48 Coordination meetings
1,827 mt road, sea, river and air
People icon 3,974 m3 Storage
Mozambique

Mozambique

Following Category 3 Cyclone Idai making landfall in central Mozambique on 14 March, the Logistics Cluster was activated on 20 March to assist the humanitarian community in their efforts to deliver lifesaving items to affected areas. Six weeks later the operation in Mozambique expanded after Category 4 Cyclone Kenneth made landfall in Cabo Delgado Province in the country’s north. Both cyclones caused significant damage to logistics infrastructure across the affected areas including warehouses, roads and bridges, with the number of people affected reaching over 2.2 million.

During the response, the Logistics Cluster provided support to 102 organisations across multiple coordination cells in Maputo, Beira, Chimoio and Pemba, and published a total of 127 information management updates including 36 maps via a dedicated webpage. The Logistics Cluster, through WFP in its role as lead agency and other humanitarian partners, also supported responding organisations through facilitation of access to common services, including storage of 3,974 m3 of relief items across eight locations, transport of 1,827 mt of humanitarian cargo via road, sea, river and air, and the distribution of 3,238 litres of fuel. Support was also provided in the form of cargo flight reception at both Beira and Pemba airports, with the Logistics Cluster receiving 101 flights totalling 2,143 mt of relief items.

Cooperation and coordination with the Logistics Cluster in Mozambique was one of our best examples of what a true partnership should look like in a humanitarian context. The support we received in the first few days was essential to ensure IFRC provided relief supplies in those critical first days, especially in sharing assets and offloading cargo flights. The air operations, coordination of arrivals and offloading of all cargo through the Beira airport ensured we were able to reach the people who needed it most, quickly and effectively. We look forward to continue working with the Logistics Cluster and contributing as a partner to future humanitarian responses.

- Nikola Jovanovic, Regional Logistic Coordinator, Logistic Unit, Regional office for Africa, IFRC

As the situation improved and national structures had the capacity to meet humanitarian needs, the Logistics Cluster transferred the core cluster functions to the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) and began to phase out facilitation of common logistics services. In its exit strategy, the Logistics Cluster included a transition phase until formal deactivation of the cluster, which comprised the provision of technical support in logistics preparedness to the NDMO. To strengthen global-regional-local networks, capacities and collaboration, before, during and after emergencies, the Logistics Cluster also rolled out preparedness initiatives following the Cyclone Idai and Cyclone Kenneth operation.

CLOSED
OPERATION

Complex emergency

Nigeria

August 2016

Logistics Sector Activation
People icon 7.1 million people in need of humanitarian assistance
People icon 52 Organisations Supported
People icon 95 IM updates published
People icon 20 Coordination meetings
House icon 31,863 m3 Storage
8,060 Humanitarian cargo movement notification forms processed
Nigeria

Nigeria

The Logistics Sector in Nigeria has provided support to the government-led response in the north-east of the country since August 2016. In 2019, 7.1 million people were in need of humanitarian assistance in the worst affected states of Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe (OCHA). Through the provision of coordination, information management, capacity building and the facilitation of common services, the sector supported humanitarian organisations responding to the crisis.

In 2019, the Logistics Sector supported humanitarian organisations through the administration of a cargo movement notification system for insecure routes and served in a liaison role between state security services and humanitarian organisations moving relief materials. Active support was also provided for the Civil-Military Coordination established by OCHA and the office of the Deputy Humanitarian Coordinator.

Each month, the sector’s civil-military coordination team processed approximately 670 movement notifications submitted to the Nigerian Armed Forces (NAF), concerning the movement of over 1,850 trucks carrying humanitarian cargo to deep field locations. These notifications were consolidated and sorted into a weekly dispatch plan that was used to organise humanitarian convoys, and any necessary escorts, across the six key supply routes leading out from Maiduguri. 8,060 notifications, indicating the movement of 22,226 trucks to 92 different destinations, were processed on behalf of 33 organisations in 2019.

The Logistics Sector loaned us two Mobile Storage Units at no cost. These units have helped us to make our supply chain system more efficient in responding to our program needs.

- Bramwel M. Maina, Deputy Response Coordinator, Operations, FHI 360, Nigeria

While en route to final distribution points, organisations had the option to temporarily store any cargo in sector-managed common storage facilities strategically located in Monguno, Banki, Ngala, Bama, Dikwa and Damasak. These facilities were operated by ACTED, INTERSOS, and Solidarités International. In 2019, 31,863 m3 of relief goods were received for storage.

In 2019, the sector transitioned sector-managed storage services away from Maiduguri where the local market has recovered, in favour of field locations. The sector instead facilitated the loan of 20 Mobile Storage Units (MSUs) to 11 organisations. The Logistics Sector also supported partners to install both these and other MSUs where needed. The size of covered storage space on loan in 2019 exceeded 5,000 m2.

Given the security risks along main supply routes and the poor road infrastructure, critical humanitarian aid such as medicines and therapeutic food supplements was also regularly airlifted from Maiduguri to remote locations throughout Borno state. Première Urgence Internationale (PUI), in partnership with UNHAS, operated a sector-managed air cargo consolidation service in Maiduguri, collecting cargo destined for air transport and delivering it to the airport for UNHAS airlift. In 2019, 18 organisations arranged delivery of over 67 mt of cargo to UNHAS via this service.

The Logistics Sector provides coordination to support responding organisations in creating synergies and avoiding duplication of efforts. A total of 20 coordination meetings were held in 2019, providing a vital forum for humanitarian organisations to discuss common logistics issues. In conjunction with this, information management remained key to keeping organisations working in Nigeria informed and supporting them in their operational planning. 95 information management updates, including maps, were shared via information sharing tools such as the dedicated webpage and mailing list.

In 2019, the Logistics Sector increased its efforts to reinforce the capacity of its partners, particularly through trainings targeted at national staff. A total of 270 participants from 48 organisations were trained in 18 trainings across four locations over the course of the year.

US$3.6 million requirement
67%
funded

Complex emergency

South Sudan

October 2011

Logistics Cluster Activation
People icon 7.1 million people in need of humanitarian assistance
Partnership icon 205 Organisations Supported
Information icon 282 IM updates published
Cog icon 79 Coordination meetings
6,481 mt Road, River and Air transport
Truck icon 48 INTER-AGENCY HUMANITARIAN CONVOYS Coordinated BY ROAD AND RIVER
Lila Ricart, Information Management Officer, South Sudan

South Sudan

The Logistics Cluster was first activated in 2011 to address logistical challenges including a fragile security situation, limited access, and a wet season that renders much of South Sudan inaccessible for half the year. In 2019, the cluster continued to play a key role in supporting 205 humanitarian organisations with coordination, information management, Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) preparedness, capacity building, and facilitation of access to common logistics services.

An improved security situation combined with expanded physical and humanitarian access enabled the Logistics Cluster to drive logistics efficiencies by expanding road and river transport over the more costly option of air transport for the movement of relief items to hard-to-reach areas. The Logistics Cluster, with support from the WFP Access and Security Units, coordinated 41 humanitarian convoys along seven major supply routes on behalf of the humanitarian community. In conjunction with IOM’s Common Transport Services project, the cluster also transported humanitarian cargo to areas surrounding the Bentiu and Wau hubs by road via the Beyond Responses, reducing the reliance on air operations. Beyond Response Operations were implemented over the course of the year and 54 locations in Northern Bahr El Ghazal, Unity, Warrap and Western Bahr El Ghazal States were reached by road rather than by air.

During 2019, the Logistics Cluster has continued their unwavering support to Relief International in delivering humanitarian and lifesaving relief items to vulnerable communities in Upper Nile. The Logistics Cluster has also invested and contributed crucially to building the capacity of Relief International in terms of training and sharing knowledge and expertise.

- Charles Otuma, Deputy Country Director - Operations, Relief International South Sudan

During the dry season, the Logistics Cluster increased the frequency of road convoys and facilitated the pre-positioning of stock in common storage facilities across 22 locations, mitigating the impact of the ensuing rainy season. In addition, in 2019 the cluster loaned 10 Mobile Storage Units (MSU) to six organisations for partner-managed common storage in deep field locations where the cluster does not have a presence.

Following the successful increase of river movement by WFP Logistics, the Logistics Cluster more than doubled the number of 2018 movements of relief items along the Nile River. For the first time, the cluster also coordinated boat convoys to destinations relying heavily on humanitarian assistance located along the Sobat river such as Mandeng and Ulang, and reached Old Fangak via the El Zharaf river. With ten barge movements and seven boat convoys over the course of the year, 1,357 mt of humanitarian cargo was transported by river.

While there was an increased focus on road and river transport, the use of air transport remained necessary to move relief items to locations unreachable by any other means. Through WFP Aviation, the Logistics Cluster facilitated access to five air assets based in the strategic hubs of Juba, Rumbek and Bor. A total of 4,362 mt of humanitarian cargo was delivered by air.

The importance of maintaining air transport services available to the humanitarian community was underlined as unprecedented flooding affected nearly 1 million people across the country in October 2019. The Logistics Cluster scaled up its logistical support to the humanitarian community and transported a total of 745 mt of flood-related cargo to affected areas. As the majority of response locations were only reachable by air as a consequence of airstrips being badly damaged or even inundated with water, the Logistics Cluster, through WFP Aviation, acquired an additional helicopter (Mi8) fully dedicated to the response based in Bor. When available, and landing conditions permitted, the cluster also used a fixed wing aircraft to support the flooding response.

To strengthen both the current and future response operations, the Logistics Cluster increased support to capacity building of national humanitarian logistics staff in a range of skills and across levels of expertise. A dedicated training officer joined the Logistics Cluster team in-country, facilitating 33 trainings for 671 participants (114 female, 557 male) from 148 organisations throughout the year. Trainings were held in eight locations across South Sudan and covered subjects such as basic and advanced humanitarian logistics, MSU erection, warehouse management and an introduction to the Logistics Cluster and wider cluster system.

To address common logistics gaps and minimise duplication of effort, the Logistics Cluster continued to provide logistical coordination and information management services to organisations operating across South Sudan. In 2019, 79 coordination meetings were held in seven locations and 282 information updates were published.

On behalf of WFP South Sudan, the Logistics Cluster continued to take an active role in EVD Preparedness activities in 2019. As lead of the EVD Logistics Technical Working Group and representing WFP on the National Task Force, the Logistics Cluster established common storage for EVD items in four high-risk locations. The cluster also coordinated with UNHRD on the procurement of four ambulances donated to priority areas, with WFP Engineering on the construction of three isolation units, and liaised with UNHAS for dedicated EVD passenger and sample collection requests.

US$26.9 million requirement
98%
funded

Complex emergency

Syria

January 2013

Logistics Cluster Activation
People icon 11.7 million people in need of humanitarian assistance
Partnership icon 99 Organisations Supported
Information icon 71 IM updates published
Cog icon 44 Coordination meetings
Truck icon 10,000 mt Road transport
House icon 16,559 m3 Storage
Syria

Syria

The Logistics Cluster was activated in Syria in January 2013. Almost seven years on, the Syrian context remained one of the most complex humanitarian crises worldwide, with an estimated 11.7 million people in need of humanitarian and protection assistance in 2019 (OCHA). In September 2014, the Whole of Syria (WoS) approach was adopted as a result of the UN Security Council Resolution 2165. The resolution brought together separate regional operations - Syria, Turkey, Iraq and up until June 2018, Jordan - into a single framework.

In 2019, based on gaps and needs identified with partners, the Logistics Cluster supported a total of 99 humanitarian organisations with coordination, information management and facilitation of common logistics services. This included cross-border transhipment services, inter-agency convoys, common transport, contingency fuel provision and warehousing.

I always look forward to Logistics Cluster meetings. I get to meet colleagues from other organisations and hear their concerns, difficulties and successes – it brings us closer together. During these meetings, boundaries between agencies blur and it’s almost like we all become part of the same unit, discussing and finding solutions to our shared logistics challenges. These fora can also help us to make operational decisions together, which is empowering.

- Mohammad Al-Khaldi, Logistics Officer, WFP, Damascus

The Logistics Cluster provided coordination support for cross-border operations and transhipment services from Turkey and Iraq. In Turkey, transhipment was managed by the Logistics Cluster at the crossing points of Bab al Hawa and Bab al Salam. Following a deterioration of the humanitarian situation in north-west Syria, the transhipment operation was vital to ensure that lifesaving aid reached affected populations, especially ahead of the winter. In 2019, the Logistics Cluster facilitated the transhipment of 8,033 trucks at the two crossings – almost a doubling of the number the year before.

In Iraq, the Logistics Cluster used the Al-Yarubiyah border crossing to facilitate the transhipment of humanitarian cargo, supporting UN partners with the delivery of predominantly medical items into north-east Syria. Over the course of the year, 40 trucks were coordinated for transhipment services.

Throughout 2019, the cluster continued to support the coordination of inter-agency convoys in close collaboration with OCHA and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC). Four humanitarian convoys were coordinated inside Syria in 2019. The cluster also supported with common transport. In total, the Logistics Cluster facilitated the road transport of 10,000 mt of relief items on behalf of eight organisations.

Making use of WFP warehouses in Aleppo, Homs, Al-Hasakeh and Rural Damascus, the Logistics Cluster facilitated access to common storage services. Following a scale-up in humanitarian response needs in north-east Syria in October 2019, the Logistics Cluster also increased available storage capacity in Qamishli, as well as provided ongoing support to SARC for the augmentation of additional warehousing space in Deir-ez-Zor. Throughout the year, the Logistics Cluster facilitated the reception of a total 16,559 m3 of relief items for storage.

With a complex operation spanning three countries, sharing information and coordinating between actors was paramount. In 2019, the Logistics Cluster shared 71 information management updates and held 44 coordination meetings in Damascus, Erbil, Gaziantep, Antakya, and other locations within Syria.

The cluster also facilitated 13 trainings on core logistics topics across the region with a total of 369 humanitarians (319 men, 50 women) from 95 organisations participating.

US$6.4 million requirement
55%
funded

Complex emergency

Yemen

June 2011

Logistics Cluster Activation
People icon 24.1 million people in need of humanitarian assistance
Partnership icon 74 Organisations Supported
Information icon 131 IM updates published
Cog icon 20 Coordination meetings
Truck icon 53,765 m3 Road transport
Plane icon 2,333 m3 Air transport
Boat icon 21,087 m3 Sea transport
House icon 75,750 m3 Storage
Yemen

Yemen

In its fifth year of widespread conflict, in 2019 Yemen remained the worst humanitarian crisis in the world. An estimated 24.1 million people were in need of humanitarian assistance in a complex and fluid context including severe economic decline, food insecurity, cholera outbreaks, and natural disasters (OCHA). The Logistics Cluster has been active in Yemen since June 2011 and has since continued to adapt its strategy and activities to overcome critical logistics challenges in close coordination with the partner community.

In 2019, the Logistics Cluster supported 74 partners with coordination, information management and facilitation of access to common logistics services. The latter included air cargo transport, sea passenger transport, sea cargo transport, inland road transport and storage of relief items.

The air cargo transport service connecting Djibouti to Sana’a was specifically dedicated to urgent and life-saving relief items. Over the course of the year, 2,333 m3 of cargo was airlifted through WFP-chartered flights.

Since May 2016, the Logistics Cluster has been coordinating and facilitating a weekly passenger sea transport service between Djibouti and Aden and between Djibouti and Hudaydah through two WFP-chartered vessels, VOS Apollo and VOS Theia. The schedule is set to facilitate easy connection with UNHAS flights in and out of Djibouti and Aden. The vessels have a capacity of 600 mt and are therefore also used for sea cargo transport from Djibouti to Aden and to Hudaydah when the need arises. In addition, both vessels can be used for emergency evacuation purposes. This was the case in August 2019 when the vessels facilitated three accelerated staff rotations. Since then, VOS Theia has been kept on stand-by in the port of Aden due to the volatile security situation and the sea service connecting Djibouti to Hudaydah was therefore temporarily put on hold. Over the course of 2019, a total of 344 passengers from 15 organisations and 21,087 m3 of humanitarian cargo was transported via sea.

The Logistics Cluster was committed to commonly address the real needs of humanitarian organisations during the emergency response in Yemen this year. The transportation services for medical aid provided by the Logistics Cluster is one of the key elements that really impacts the design of the medical supply chain of MDM and adds value for our operation. Working together as partners, we succeeded in delivering more than 50 tonnes of medicines and medical aid by cluster air and sea freight transportation from the Djibouti Hub to both the North and South of Yemen. Thanks to the Logistics Cluster in Yemen for facilitating our humanitarian operation.

- Waleed Alrubaidi, Logistic Coordinator, Médecins du Monde

Challenges affecting road transport between the south and the north of the country, humanitarian access, and movement restrictions particularly impacted the downstream supply chain of Logistics Cluster partners, and as a result the delivery of humanitarian assistance to people in need. Despite the above, the Logistics Cluster continued to facilitate inland road transport. 53,765 m3 of humanitarian supplies were transported on behalf of 31 organisations, covering over 216 locations across 20 governorates and 95 districts.

17,640 m2 of common storage capacity across Aden, Bajil, Hudaydah and Sana’a was made available to the humanitarian community in Yemen and the facilities in Aden were augmented to include temperature-controlled and cold chain storage. In addition, the Logistics Cluster loaned 15 MSUs to eight organisations to be managed as common storage in strategic areas. Overall, 75,750 m3 of cargo was accepted into common storage over the year.

During the second quarter of 2019, fuel provision services made available to the humanitarian community since 2011 were transferred to WFP Bilateral Service Provision to continue to fulfill potential ad-hoc fuel requests (diesel and petrol) from humanitarian organisations in Yemen on a cost-recovery basis.

In 2019, coordination and information management services were provided in both Sana’a and Aden to maximise the use of available resources in-country and avoid duplication of efforts. 20 coordination meetings were organised in Sana’a and Aden and 131 information updates published.

US$56.2 million requirement
75%
funded

Natural disaster

Zimbabwe

April 2019

Logistics Cluster Activation
People icon 24 Organisations Supported
People icon 46 IM updates published
People icon 11 Coordination meetings
Helicopter icon 88 mt Air transport
People icon 541 m3 Storage
Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe

The Logistics Cluster was activated in Zimbabwe in early April, following severe flooding and infrastructural damage to Manicaland Province caused by the remnants of Cyclone Idai which crossed into the country as a tropical storm on 17 March. With approximately 90% of roads and bridges in the affected areas rendered unusable, air transport was the only means of reaching cut-off populations with assistance.

The Logistics Cluster, through WFP, facilitated access to air transport by Mi8 helicopter for the humanitarian community. Over the course of the response, 88 mt of humanitarian cargo was transported from Mutare to 15 locations in the affected districts of Chimanimani and Chipinge. To facilitate air cargo consolidation, the Logistics Cluster also made common storage available at the airfield in Mutare where 541 m3 of relief items were stored over the length of the response.

Collaboration and coordination between UN agencies in particular and all the developing partners in general is becoming increasingly critical as the world faces formidable challenges of climate change, displacements due to conflicts or natural disaster and inequalities both within and between countries. Logistics Cluster support during emergency response helps to save valuable lives as well as allows us to make maximum use of growingly scarce resources, be it funding, fuel etc. I also link it to smaller carbon footprint with the spirit and approach of ‘do no harm’.

- Tabinda Syed, Supply and Logistics Manager, UNICEF Zimbabwe

Overall, 24 organisations were supported through coordination, information management and facilitation of access to crucial logistics services. A total of 11 coordination meetings were convened in Harare and Mutare and 46 information updates including access constraints maps were published on a dedicated webpage.

As the situation improved and the response transitioned from emergency to early recovery, the Logistics Cluster scaled down its operational activities and began working towards rolling out preparedness initiatives, designed to build on lessons learned as part of the response to foster continued collaboration and communication within the humanitarian community in Zimbabwe.

CLOSED
OPERATION

Cameroon

In 2019, the Logistics Cluster continued to monitor the situation in Cameroon which is experiencing the impact of three distinct, complex humanitarian crises fuelled primarily by violence and insecurity. The cluster was activated in October 2018, specifically in relation to the North-West South-West crisis which saw insecurity and attacks against civilians cause mass movements of people.

A Coordinator and an Information Management Officer were deployed to Cameroon to meet with partners and conduct a logistics gaps and needs analysis. Following consultations with humanitarian organisations working on the response as well as with the WFP Country Office, the in-country commercial logistics capacity was found to be sufficient to meet humanitarian needs and no additional cluster activities were required. The cluster was therefore moved to a dormant status.

Haiti

The 2019 Humanitarian Needs Overview (HNO) identified approximately 2.6 million people in need of humanitarian assistance in Haiti and throughout 2019, the economic, social and political context deteriorated further. As of mid-November, the deteriorated security situation affected both the public and private sectors’ supply chain capacity to provide essential services. Following a gaps and needs assessment, coordination and information management were identified as the two areas in which the support of the Logistics Sector to the humanitarian community was required.

During the same month a Logistics Sector coordination cell was established in Port-au-Prince to coordinate inter-agency humanitarian efforts in collaboration with national counterparts. Before the end of the year, four coordination meetings were organised to facilitate the exchange of information between actors. An initial 15 information updates were also provided through a common mailing list and a dedicated webpage. Overall, the sector supported 42 partners including 12 national stakeholders.

IRAQ

The Logistics Cluster was activated in Iraq in April 2014 to support the response to the Level 3 emergency that had seen millions of people displaced across the country amidst a surge of violence. While humanitarian partners continued to respond to the needs of internally displaced persons (IDPs), host communities and returnees throughout 2019, key logistics gaps identified during previous stages of the Logistics Cluster operation had by then been bridged or changed. A more predictable supply chain and supply pipeline, resumption of local market capacity, and a downsizing of humanitarian actors' presence led to a decline in the demand for Logistics Cluster services.

The Logistics Cluster in Iraq was deactivated in the first quarter of 2019 and priority activities were transitioned to a WFP/Mercy Hands co-led Logistics Working Group with increased involvement of the government.

The Global Logistics Cluster, in close collaboration with the WFP Iraq country office also rolled out Preparedness Project initiatives across 2019-2020.

During its last months of operation in 2019, the cluster supported 32 partners with coordination, information management and access to common logistics services. The last two coordination meetings were held in Erbil and Baghdad in January and nine information updates were published on the dedicated webpage of the operation. As part of the transition, Mercy Hands, which had provided common storage services in Tikrit and Hamam Al Alil camps, converted the services to a cost-recovery basis for the humanitarian community and the Logistics Cluster donated loaned MSUs to users in the field.

LIBYA

Since 2011, Libya has been affected by political, security and economic volatility and the humanitarian situation is increasingly complex. In 2019, 893,000 people were estimated to be in need of humanitarian assistance including internally displaced persons, returnees, non-displaced conflict-affected people and host communities, refugees and migrants. Violence during 2019 saw further displacement (OCHA). Humanitarian organisations faced a number of challenges to effectively deliver relief items, especially due to security and access constraints around Tripoli and in the east and south of the country. The Logistics Sector supported the humanitarian community with coordination and information management to facilitate operational planning amidst volatility.

In 2019 the Logistics Sector published 36 information updates and organised eight coordination meetings for partners out of Tunis from where the international community is supporting the response. Partners also worked together to maintain a flexible network and facilitate quick sharing of information. Three organisations served as regional focal points to support logistics working groups operating out of the east, west and south – Première Urgence International (PUI), Cesvi and International Medical Corps respectively. PUI also moderated a Skype group, allowing Logistics Coordinators to exchange relevant logistics information in real time. In response to a request, the Logistics Sector facilitated the storage of 163 m3 of humanitarian relief items.

VENEZUELA

The Logistics Cluster was officially activated in-country to support the humanitarian response to the crisis. Due to the absence of WFP in Venezuela, OCHA has been acting as lead agency with support from the Global Logistics Cluster in Rome. A Logistics Cluster Coordinator and Information Management Officer were deployed to the country in November 2019, gathering 15 partners in a first coordination meeting in Caracas before the end of the year.

The cluster also provided training to 47 staff members of the National Disaster Management Agency in Emergency Humanitarian Supply Chain and Warehouse Management. The team started conducting a logistics needs and gaps assessment, collecting information from national and international partner organisations as well as representatives from the private sector.

Preparedness

Local responders and field-based initiatives are at the centre of the Logistics Cluster Preparedness Project. The project’s primary aim is to support local governments, national and international NGOs, UN agencies, development partners and the private sector to have a coordinated approach towards improved local supply chain resilience, and to ensure actors are ready for a joint humanitarian logistics response.

Throughout 2019, preparedness activities were focused on nine countries. Initiatives were also undertaken across the Pacific Region under the lead of WFP, through the Pacific Humanitarian Team (PHT) cluster system.

Building capacity on the ground has enormous potential, and should be at the centre of any preparedness activities.

Sean Rafter, Managing Director, HELP Logistics

In Bangladesh, a major milestone was completed in August when a three-day, simulation-based emergency logistics gaps analysis workshop was held. The in-country preparedness officer worked closely with the Ministry for Disaster Management and Relief, WFP and the Global Logistics Cluster (GLC) to bring together 90+ stakeholders for a gaps analysis workshop. The event explored a potential earthquake scenario in the densely populated city of Dhaka, with participants identifying key logistics gaps that could exist in the event of a large-scale emergency. Following the workshop, a Logistics Preparedness Action Plan was drafted to address the challenges identified and it is currently under review by the government and the Bangladesh National Logistics Cluster.

In Lao PDR, the Logistics Cluster is supporting the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare with capacity building to support its Mobile Storage Unit pre-positioning strategy, an important measure to ensure rapid temporary relief item storage in strategic areas following disasters. The GLC team also supported an after-action review focused on logistics and coordination during the recent flooding response in six provinces. During the event, key priority activities were identified which will be integrated as part of the drafting of a government-led Logistics Preparedness Action Plan.

In Madagascar, a joint Memorandum of Understanding between WFP and the National Disaster Management Agency, BNGRC, was signed with the aim of strengthening logistics coordination mechanisms at regional and national levels. Following activities implemented in 2018, five sub-national workshops took place in high-risk regions to reinforce local coordination mechanisms. In June, the first ever Logistics Response Team Training to be conducted in French was held in-country. The training was a critical step to share best practice, build capacity and bring responders together before emergency.

Following the Cyclone Idai response earlier in the year, preparedness activities began in both Malawi and Mozambique, with workshops held in both countries to bring together members of government ministries and humanitarian actors to map logistics gaps and address contingency planning. Work will continue in both countries to develop next steps, working towards the development of a common logistics preparedness action plan. A scoping mission was also undertaken in Zimbabwe, with project activities to begin rollout in February 2020. The transition from emergency operations to preparedness activities in all three countries solidifies the Logistics Cluster’s commitment to strengthen collaboration of global, regional and local logistics networks before, during and after an emergency.

In South Sudan, the Global Logistics Cluster supported Ebola Virus Disease preparedness actions alongside the ongoing emergency response. In the Philippines, activity implementation began in December 2019. During the second half of 2019, preparedness activities were also launched in both Haiti and Iraq with preparedness officers deployed in September. However, ongoing instability in both countries has so far limited project progress.

In the Pacific the regional Logistics Cluster, through WFP, supported activities across 12 Pacific Island Countries and Territories, spanning four key project areas: coordination, information management, prepositioning and training and simulation. Throughout the year, WFP continued to work closely with National Disaster Management Offices on the rollout and revision of locally-driven logistics preparedness action plans and tailored capacity strengthening activities. National stakeholders also contributed to region-wide initiatives such as the Pacific Logistics Mapping (PALM) Platform, and data collection workshops for the creation of provincial - level Logistics Capacity Assessment Tools. In close collaboration with Pacific humanitarian partners, work also commenced on the development of a public advocacy website aimed at reducing the volume of unsolicited bilateral donations (UBDs) during a disaster response. The website is scheduled to launch in the first half of 2020.

STRATEGY IMPLEMENTATION PLAN

In September 2019, the Logistics Cluster community finalised its first ever Strategy Implementation Plan for activities at the global level, demonstrating the strength of the cluster partnership.

Strategy Goals

As a management, monitoring and evaluation tool for global level, cluster activities, the plan will strengthen accountability and enhance coordination amongst the multitude of cluster stakeholders, and increase the visibility and direct involvement of partners in cluster activities.

The current community-driven strategy was adopted by the Logistics Cluster in 2016, but the decision to strengthen collaboration with a results-based management framework was only taken in May 2018.

Subsequently, a dedicated Working Group led a year-long drafting process to translate the “vision” and “goals” of the Logistics Cluster Strategy for 2016-2021 into a measurable roadmap for action.

Consultations were held with Logistics Cluster partners at the Global Meetings in Rome 2018 and Dubai 2019 with the KPI, Preparedness, and Lessons Learned Working Groups, and with the Global Logistics Cluster Support Team.

The resulting draft plan was finalised and endorsed at the Global Meeting in Dublin in September 2019.

Before the end of the year, 33 organisations had signed up 107 times to implement activities in the plan. Discussions on activity areas were also kicked off to capture the know-how and experience of the broader community ahead of the implementation phase starting in 2020.

The Logistics Cluster has always been serious about how it works as a community and this was the logical next step. Not an easy one, but made light by a great team. I'm looking forward to see the strategic plan work and develop in practice.

Martijn Blansjaar, Head of Logistics and Supply, FIS Division, Oxfam GB