Ericsson Response is a global initiative that is helping to transform emergency response. Through the initiative, Ericsson works in partnership with United Nations (UN) agencies and other non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to respond to requests for telecommunications support in disaster situations and in a range of aid and development contexts.
Ericsson’s flagship volunteer program has been supporting disaster relief efforts for over 15 years . Since launching in 2000, the initiative has supported more than 40 relief efforts in more than 30 countries.
Today, Ericsson Response works with aid agency partners including the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the UN World Food Programme (WFP), UNICEF and others.
The program is staffed by employee volunteers with diverse technical skills and backgrounds, all driven by a desire to make a difference. In 2016, there were over 140 volunteers from 30 countries.
The Ericsson Response team sets up mobile networks for voice and data communication that enable aid agencies to work more efficiently at disaster sites, and also supports partners with ICT training and knowledge sharing.
In 2016, Ericsson Response deployed to Haiti after the devastating Hurricane Matthew. Under the ICT Humanitarian Response Working Group for Haiti, 19 sites were established, supporting over 900 humanitarian users and 30 agencies Following the 2015 earthquake in Nepal (video: Ericsson Response in Nepal), Ericsson Response provided the humanitarian community with shared internet connectivity and telecommunications services. Ericsson’s WIDER solution was used to connect some 1,430 users from over 250 humanitarian organizations in their efforts.
In 2015, Ericsson Response helped connect over 90 humanitarian sites, including community care centers and Ebola treatment units, in Sierra Leone and Guinea. This activity was carried out in collaboration with our partners WFP and the Emergency Telecommunications Cluster (ETC), a global network of organizations that work together to provide common communications services in humanitarian emergencies.
Ericsson Response also assisted when Tropical Cyclone Pam struck Vanuatu in the Pacific region, causing widespread devastation in parts of the country. It also collaborated with ETC and WFP in South Sudan and Iraq to provide communications and expertise to support humanitarian efforts in refugee and Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps.
One of the biggest efforts in the history of Ericsson Response was in November 2013, when super typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines. Ericsson Response, as a member of ETC and in partnership WFP, responded to the emergency by deploying a total of 24 volunteers, and provided wireless internet connectivity to aid agencies on the ground. The volunteers set up wireless connectivity in five sites across the Philippines, allowing more than 6,400 users from the humanitarian community to better organize the relief operations.
Since 2012, Ericsson Response has worked with ETC members (WFP and emergency.lu) to provide vital communications services to relief workers in South Sudan (video: Ericsson Response in South Sudan). The combined response solution provides free, reliable and high-speed internet connectivity that supports life-saving work in remote areas.
During the large earthquake in Haiti in January 2010, a portable container-based GSM network, an ETC deployment hosted by OCHA, was done on request from the UN to provide several of its organizations, as well as other humanitarian organizations, with telecommunications and ICT capabilities. A total of 19 volunteers worked in shifts for six months to cover communication in an area of 40 square kilometers, including the capital Port-au-Prince. Aid workers on the ground averaged 3,000 calls daily using Ericsson Response’s containerized mobile communication system.
Ericsson Response - mission timeline
||Ericsson Response is established
||Extreme floods in Algeria and severe drought in Tajikistan
||Flooding in Hungary and earthquakes in Pakistan, Peru and El Salvador
||Rail disaster in Tanzania and food crisis in Lesotho. Humanitarian aid to Afghanistan
||Earthquakes in Algeria and Iran. Hurricane in the Caribbean. Aid to Liberia
||Tsunami in Indonesia and Sri Lanka
||Earthquakes in Pakistan
||ICT support to aid workers in South Sudan and to earthquake victims in Pakistan
||Connectivity for aid workers in Central African Republic and after earthquake in Peru
||Connectivity for Save the Children in South Sudan
||Assessment of ICT needs in the Philippines. ICT support for de-mining mission in Democratic Republic of the Congo
||Earthquake in Haiti
||Engagement in "One UN” initiative
||ICT support in South Sudan, Mozambique, Tanzania and Uganda
||Super typhoon Haiyan (locally known as Yolanda) in the Philippines. Continuation of South Sudan mission
||Ebola Response mission in West Africa. IDP camps in Iraq. Continuation of efforts in South Sudan and the Philippines
||Earthquake in Nepal. Cyclone in Vanuatu. Continuation of missions in Iraq, South Sudan and West Africa
||Hurricane Matthew in Haiti