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Operations Update

The latest from the field

Caribbean - Hurricane Maria and Irma

Barbuda Devastation Hurricane Irma ShelterBox

In early September, Category 5 Hurricane Irma caused devastation in the Caribbean. Less than two weeks later Hurricane Maria made landfall, bringing with it a new wave of destruction. 

We are currently distributing a variety of aid across the Caribbean, so we can tailor our response to best support different communities.

On some islands, like St Kitts and Nevis, Dominica and the Dominican Republic, there are enough natural resources available to quickly rebuild homes with the help of a ShelterKit.

In other areas, like the British Virgin Islands and Barbuda, our tents are the best option – creating a warm, safe home while the long clean-up process takes place. 

Find out more here


Bangladesh - Rohingya Crisis

We have a team in Bangladesh working to understand more about the needs of the Rohingya people, more than 600,000 have now been forced across the Myanmar border into Bangladesh and thousands more continue to arrive each week. This is the fastest growing refugee crisis in the world.

A majority of the displaced people are currently living in makeshift shelters of bamboo and thin plastic sheets, leaving them exposed to the elements.

ShelterBox aid is arriving in Bangladesh, we will be supporting families with blankets, tarpaulins, solar lights and water carriers. This vital aid allows them to collect clean drinking water, and safely move about in the camps at night.

Find out more here


Bangladesh - Flooding affecting millions

Rohingya crisis Bangladesh Myanmar ShelterBox

Since the Monsoon season started in June, Bangladesh has been severely hit by constant rain. At its worst, more than a third of the land was submerged.

More than 70,000 homes have been completely destroyed and 500,000 are partially damaged. This destruction has forced 8 million people from their homes. The same extreme weather phenomenon has also affected large swathes of India, Nepal and Myanmar too.

A ShelterBox Response Team is on the ground, working with the Bangladesh Red Cross and Rotary to help those who have lost everything in the catastrophic flooding.

Aid has arrived in the country and is being distributed, which includes shelter kits, tarpaulins, blankets, mosquito nets and solar lights to support 3000 families.

Syria - Ongoing conflict

Family in Syria

The conflict in Syria has now entered its seventh year. What started out as a peaceful protest in 2011 has since become one of the most brutal and complex civil wars on the planet.

We're working with our partners, Hand in Hand for Syria and ReliefAid, to help those affected. The current focus is to provide shelter and aid ahead of colder and stormier weather conditions, and to meet needs throughout the severe winter in this region.

Over the years we have provided a range of shelter aid as well as warm clothing for children and practical items such as kerosene heaters. We've already helped 10,000 families so far in 2017 and more aid is currently on its way. 

Find out more about the conflict in Syria here

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Somaliland - Drought

Severe drought in Somaliland has affected an estimated 766,000 people since November 2016, leading to the degrading of grazing land and displacement of families, forcing them to move large distances to seek fresh food for their animals.

As the drought continues, we are working closely with our partner ActionAid to ensure that families have safe shelter throughout Somaliland. So far, we have supported around 500 families with ShelterKits, including tarpaulins and kitchen sets. 

A team has recently returned after meeting families to see how their lives have started to improve since receiving ShelterBox support. Once our evaluations are complete a second and larger shipment of aid will take place.

Find out more here

Iraq - After the relief of Mosul

On 10 July 2017 the Iraqi government declared that Mosul had finally been liberated after three years of Islamic State control.  However, the humanitarian situation is still dire in Iraq and the need for ShelterBox aid is as prevalent as ever.

People are slowly returning to Mosul, but there is still a huge need for aid in and around the city, and a massive displacement of civilians throughout the whole country. Displaced families have struggled in the severe heat over the summer months, now they have to prepare for a long extreme winter.

With the help of our partners working in Iraq, so far in 2017 we have provided essential aid and shelter to more than 8,000 families.

Read more

Lake Chad Basin Crisis

Since 2009, Boko Haram has been waging an insurgency in Northern Nigeria. The violence has since spread to the neighbouring regions of Niger, Chad and Cameroon, affecting around 30 million people. Recent drought has created food insecurity and added another layer of need onto the existing crisis.


Our partner IEDA Relief has been distributing tents, tarpaulins, hygiene kits and other life-saving aid to the most vulnerable in Cameroon. In recent months we have also sent out a shipment of SchoolBoxes to help restore children's futures.

We are also working with IEDA Relief in the extreme north of Cameroon, where it is reported that families are in desperate need of shelter.


Recent Boko Haram attacks in the Kablewa camp has led to massive population displacement in Niger. The camp, that hosted 16,000 people, has been disbanded. Nearly 250,000 people, half of the families in Diffa have been affected.

With the rainy season on its way, these people are in desperate need of shelter. ShelterBox is working with Plan International to provide emergency aid to those displaced.

The project will be split into two phases, supporting 896 families with tarpaulins and other essential aid items. Phase one has been completed and phase two of distributions is about to begin.

So far we have helped 448 families with ShelterBoxes, replacing the tents with tarpaulins and extra thermal blankets, tailoring our kit to what is needed the most. Due to the increased risk of malaria following the rainy season mosquito nets will also be distributed.


In Chad we are partnering with the local aid agency ICAHD to support vulnerable families in Chad.

So far, 456 semi-permanent shelters have been constructed and 500 kits of vital aid including blankets, buckets, solar lights, mosquito nets and ground sheets have been distributed to affected families.

ShelterBox is now working on phase two of this project with ICAHD.