We deliver the essentials people need to begin rebuilding their lives in the aftermath of a disaster. Every time we respond to a natural disaster or humanitarian crisis, we ensure that the aid we provide is tailored to the needs of the communities we’re helping.
ShelterBoxes include a range of items designed to help families who have lost their homes and belongings regain a sense of normality. The contents are altered, depending on the disaster, but a ShelterBox typically contains a disaster relief tent for a family, thermal blankets and groundsheets, water storage and purification equipment, solar lamps, cooking utensils, a basic tool kit, mosquito nets and a children’s activity pack.
Shelter kits contain a selection of materials, including tools, ropes, fixings and heavy-duty tarpaulins, that can be used to make repairs on existing structures and to create emergency shelters too. Being able to provide people with these kits not only means that they can stay close to their homes and communities, but that they also have the tools to start rebuilding other buildings such as schools and clinics.
The adaptable shelter kits are particularly useful in some of the most remote parts of the world, as they are very easy to transport and distribute.
We offer a range of tents, which are each suited to different situations. We most commonly distribute our distinctive white tents, which have been specifically designed to withstand extreme weather conditions and temperatures.
In addition, we sometimes provide more compact versions of these tents, which are smaller to transport, easier to put up and take up less space. They are ideal for responses where space is at a premium or where temporary shelter is required for a shorter amount of time, such as flooding.
In certain situations, most frequently when supporting refugees, we also supply tents made to the specifications of the United Nations and the International Federation of the Red Cross and the Red Crescent. By supplying these tents, we are able to work together with other organisations to respond to large-scale crises and ensure that the families we help each receive the same quality of aid. Also, these tents are designed for longer-term use and are therefore most suitable for people who will not be able to return to their own homes in the foreseeable future.
We have recently added a tent created specifically for cold weather climates to our range of aid. These are quilted, three layer tents that have been designed so that a stove can be safely placed and used inside.
In any disaster a large number of people without shelter will inevitably be children. Schools will often have been destroyed along with homes and other buildings. ShelterBox will, therefore, sometimes include ‘SchoolBoxes' in their aid consignments. These contain essential supplies for teachers, including blackboard paint and chalk, along with school equipment for 50 children.
We are constantly evolving as a charity and continue to develop our range of aid items to reflect the different needs for each disaster. Sometimes we might supplement our aid with special items, such as tent winterisation kits, which include partition walls that help keep heat in, along with insulated sleeping mats that can be stuffed with materials such as straw to create warm mattresses.
During other emergencies, we may send out items, such as tents, blankets or water filtration equipment in bulk. It is essential that we always support the needs of those who have survived disasters and this can vary enormously based on the type and scale of a disaster. We also do this to maximise donors’ money ensuring that we only send what is really needed and appropriate for the situation and culture.