Problem: lack of coordination in humanitarian pre-positioning

Pre-positioning relief items is a preparedness measure set up by many humanitarian organisations all over the globe. It helps to be better prepared to respond to natural or man-made disasters, improving the overall speed, quality and efficiency of humanitarian responses. When a disaster strikes, the implementation of coordinated and effective pre-positioning reduces the time and costs required to transport relevant relief items where they are needed the most.

However, pre-positioning is still very much done in silo, with organisations activating separate strategies. Due to a lack of communication, coordination and a common objective, humanitarian organisations and agencies often do not take into consideration what other actors around them might already be storing, nor where.

As a result, there is little overall coherence regarding which core relief items are stored, in which locations and in which quantities. This lack of coordination and coherence becomes apparent during the response phase of an emergency. In some cases, relief items are not enough to cover the needs of the affected people; conversely, there might also be an excess of certain items. In other cases, paradoxically, items are not stored in the most appropriate location, preventing the very measure of pre-positioning from effectively making a difference in an emergency response. In this last scenario, considerable efforts are still required to transport available items where they are in fact needed, with little impact on potential improvements in terms of time and cost efficiency.

Proposed Solution: support the definition of coordinated strategies

ESUPS tackles this lack of coordination and coherence: the project objective is to support the definition of national and regional coordinated pre-positioning strategies. These will lead to increase time and cost effectiveness in stock delivery during emergencies. The objective is achieved through a set of overarching coordination activities and through a focus on 3 operational pillars driving the work: Data Collection, Data Analysis, Advocacy and Communications.