Get Airports Ready for Disaster (GARD)

Disasters caused by natural hazards impact infrastructures and entire communities. Time is of the essence when a disaster strikes, and an effective, coordinated, rapid response is required. Disaster preparedness measures and planning reduce the effects of these disasters, and airport preparedness in particular is vital to ensure relief goods and supplies reach those affected victims on time. As relief aid pours into the affected region, it is crucial that airports do not become bottlenecks and that the relief supplies reach people in need as fast as possible.

Get Airports Ready for Disaster (GARD) is an airport preparedness programme launched in 2009 by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Deutsche Post DHL Group (DPDHL) and funded by the government of Germany. GARD is a workshop-based training programme that prepares airports and trains the airport personnel in high risk countries for worst case scenarios. UNDP provides logistical & national coordination support for GARD trainings and follow-up actions while DPDHL provides aviation operations training experts to coach participants on how to prepare for the logistical challenges posed by disaster crises, and develop action plans to evaluate the capacity of the airport in case of a natural disaster.

To date, around 700 representatives from more than 30 airports worldwide have participated in GARD workshops. A refresher course – GARD plus – can also be carried out six-to-twelve months after the initial workshop in order to review the material, deepen knowledge, and help participants put what they have learned into practice.

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