We are ShelterBox

What we believe

Everyone deserves a place to call home. It is a human right and the first step towards recovery after disaster.

Shelter is so much more than just a roof. It’s the foundation for life, families and communities. It is a place to feel safe after days or weeks of fear. It offers protection from harsh weather, privacy, and helps to preserve dignity. It’s a space to heal from trauma.

Shelter and other essential items help people protect themselves from diseases like coronavirus and malaria.

Emergency shelter can also prevent communities from scattering. This means people stay connected and build resilience together.

When you don’t have to keep moving or worry about where to sleep at night, you can think about tomorrow. Items like tents, tarpaulins, tools, blankets, mosquito nets, cooking sets and water filters help to meet the most urgent needs, so you can start to earn a living, send children to school and rebuild your home.

Recovery doesn’t happen overnight, but a dry and warm place to sleep, prepare meals and be with your family is the vital first step.

Our vision

No one without shelter after disaster

Our mission

We provide shelter, essential items and technical assistance to help some of the world’s most vulnerable people recover and rebuild their homes after disaster. We listen and adapt our support to the needs of each community, working together with those affected by disaster, alongside our supporters and partners.

Our strategy

Building on the solid foundations of the last 22 years, our new 5-year strategy will see ShelterBox become even more focused on the impact emergency shelter can have for people after disaster and conflict.

Take a look at our commitments for the next 5 years and how we are going to do it.

Discover the strategy

Our promise to you

Without you, we wouldn’t be able to help families after disaster. Read our set of standards for how we work and the service you can expect.

Humanitarian principles

Everything we do is shaped by the four humanitarian principles of humanity, impartiality, independence and neutrality.

Our work and actions are bound by these principles to ensure that we are able to reach vulnerable people after disaster or in complex emergencies like wars and other conflicts.

They allow us to find and build partnerships and coordinate with other humanitarian organisations ensuring that we can support as many people as possible.

The principles are based on International Humanitarian Law:

Humanity means human suffering must be addressed wherever it is found, with particular attention given to the most vulnerable, to protect life and health, and ensure respect for others.

Neutrality means humanitarian actors must not take sides in a conflict or other dispute.

Impartiality means humanitarian aid must be provided solely on the basis of need and without discrimination. Humanitarians must not make distinctions based on nationality, race, gender, religious belief, class or political opinions.

Independence means autonomy of humanitarian actions from political, economic, military, or other objectives.

Our code of conduct

All staff and volunteers who travel with us to disaster areas sign our Code of Conduct.

This sets out our ethical and professional standards. This includes commitments to integrity, truthfulness, dedication, and honesty; to observing local and UK laws; and to not abuse power or influence over others.

It includes the principles above as well as the wider principles in the Code of Conduct for The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and NGOs in Disaster Relief.

In all humanitarian activities, our staff and volunteers prioritise safety and dignity, work without discrimination, avoid causing harm or taking sides, and promote meaningful access.

Find out more about us

Man and woman carrying shelter kit after earthquake in Nepal

Our Aid

Woman smiling while holding aid in Cameroon

How we work

woman smiling and carrying a box on her right shoulder

Our impact

take a closer look

Frequently Asked Questions

Find out more about us and what we do by reading our frequently asked questions.

Where your money goes

In 2022, we spent £14 million supporting disaster-hit families in their recovery with essential items like tents, tarpaulins, toolkits, solar lights, water filters and carriers, blankets, cooking sets and mosquito nets.

Meet the team

Our executive team and trustees share our determination for making our vision, to see a world where no family is left without shelter after disaster, happen.

22 years of ShelterBox

Over the last 22 years, we have provided emergency shelter and disaster relief in 98 different countries. In that time, we’ve supported families to get back on their feet after hurricanes, earthquakes, conflicts, droughts, cyclones and more.

Read on to see how it all began and take a look at what you’ve helped us achieve.