Skip to content

Skip to navigation

Latest
Responding to floods in Malawi

Lilongwe, 16 Jan – MapAction has sent two volunteers and one staff member to Malawi at the request of the United Nations and Malawi government to assist with the response to severe flooding.

According to the United Nations, an estimated 70,000 people have been displaced and 48 killed by extensive floods caused by recent heavy rain (as of 14 January). The floods have also caused widespread damage to crops, livestock and infrastructure. Initial assessments indicate that the southern districts of Nsanje, Chikwawa, Phalombe and Zomba have been particularly badly affected.

It is anticipated that MapAction’s volunteers will work within the UN’s central coordination hub in Lilongwe, but they may also travel to affected areas to assist with assessments. The charity’s Technical Director, Andy Smith, is joining the volunteer team to support the first use of MapAction’s new web mapping capability in a live emergency following extensive development and testing in scenario training situations.

The President of the Republic of Malawi has declared a State of Emergency in the 15 affected districts and appealed to the international community for assistance in search-and-rescue expertise, as well as the provision of tents, food and non-food items.

This is MapAction’s first emergency deployment to Malawi, however the charity provided training in GIS and GPS* for disaster response for Malawian government agencies in 2008. Malawi is also one of the focus countries for MapAction’s preparedness activities – Resilient Action for Mapping Preparedness (RAMP). These earlier preparations have resulted in much quicker access to relevant data to support this emergency response. You can read more on RAMP here.

* GIS – Geographical Information Systems / GPS – Global Positioning System

 
Fundraising & Marketing / Admin Assistant vacancy

UK, 14 Jan – MapAction is recruiting a part-time Fundraising and Marketing Assistant / Admin Assistant (22.5 hours per week).

This is a new role and has a dual remit:

1) Fundraising & Marketing Assistant (15 hours per week)

Key responsibilities will include:

  • Writing compelling copy for newsletters and web articles
  • Uploading web content and updating social media
  • Supporting fundraising activities with a specific focus on Community & Events (London marathon etc)
2) Admin Assistant (7.5 hours per week)

With MapAction's ambitious plans to grow, this role will also provide broad admin support to enable the smooth running of the office. Responsibilities will include managing office calendars, organising meetings, managing bookings and updating databases.

The full job description and person specification can be found here - Fundraising & Marketing Assistant / Admin Assistant job description

It is a part-time role (22.5 hours per week), based at MapAction’s office in Saunderton, near High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire.

How to apply

Please send a CV and covering letter to  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by 9am on Wednesday 28 January 2015. Interviews are planned for Wednesday 4 February 2015. Please indicate in your application if you are NOT available on this day.

If you would like to discuss the role prior to applying, please contact Chloe Browitt, Fundraising & Marketing Director, on This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or telephone 01494 56 88 99. No agencies please.

 
Our volunteers in action - Mali and Ghana

West Africa, 22 Dec - Two volunteers have been in action in West Africa recently helping with the efforts against Ebola - Alan Mills in Mali and KirstyFerris in Ghana. 

The Mali government asked for international assistance to prepare for the possibility of a widening Ebola outbreak after six people were infected, one of them the person who had brought the virus from Guinea. Alan joined the United Nations Disaster Assessment and Coordination team already there. He reports that the mission was about understanding the priorities for information management in Ebola preparedness, identifying what was already in place and  clarifying requirements in response to a possible further outbreak. One aspect of this included documenting all available relevant data and establishing a framework for the place codes and typical mapping we produce to clarify gaps in response. MapAction has now been asked to send a consolidation mission to Mali and it is likely that a volunteer will depart on 10 January. Alan says "Bamako will be very hot in January but it's an interesting city and there's good will from the Malians and their international partners here to co-operate and build something strong." The Mali government is establishing an Ebola Operations Centre, which could be used for other emergencies. 

Alan coordinates our Resilient Action for Mapping Preparedness project (RAMP) that started with a pilot in Southern Africa in 2012. The project aims to develop the capacity for mapping preparedness within government bodies responsible for emergency response and is targeted at countries with a high likelihood of disasters. It aims to improve their information management by providing tools, guidelines and training in collaboration with agencies; technical, GIS and information specialists. To reinforce whatever we do we have identified the need to work with intermediary organisations such as the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in the Caribbean and are in discussion with the World Food Programme in Asia Pacific. 

Liz Hughes, chief executive of MapAction says, "The Mali mission has given us the opportunity to apply the methodology of our RAMP project and demonstrate the value of preparedness work." 

In Ghana, Kirsty Ferris has just completed a two-week volunteer mission working with the United Nations Ebola Emergency Response Mission (UNMEER), working to strengthen the data management structure for the regional response to the crisis. UNMEER is tasked to provide leadership and coordination in collaboration with the host governments across all three of the most affected countries. Kirsty followed Darren Connaghan's one month paid mission; when he began the information management structure was minimal and required considerable coordination with many information management specialists across the region. This is the first time in recent years that MapAction has been involved in a regional mission at this level. 

 
How mapping worked in fighting Ebola

West Africa, 17 Dec - Since September MapAction has been actively involved in helping tackle the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, with deployments to Liberia, Sierra Leone, Mali and Ghana, as well as remote support for coordination efforts.

Our first mission was to Liberia, where 4 volunteers and 2 staff worked with the United Nations and International Humanitarian Partnership (IHP) to help coordinate the national and international Ebola response. At the time of the deployment 3,280 cases and 1,677 deaths had already been reported in-country, making it a priority to identify transmission routes and prevent further infections.

Shortly after more MapAction volunteers were deployed to Sierra Leone to work in the government’s National Ebola Response Centre in Freetown for a period of a month. Our mission was to use our mapping skills to help decision-makers ensure that adequate treatment facilities were being provided in the right places and to identify the most effective means of stopping the transmission of Ebola.

Working closely with the UK Department for International Development, our volunteers began by focusing on data management, providing reference information on administrative units and place codes at district and province level (crucial in making sure we were all making reference to the same places). We also provided information on the number of cases of Ebola, by gender and location, and identified where treatment centre were and how many beds were available.

This work was supplemented by mapping the number of cases against building density in Freetown and advising the water and sanitation authorities where to put fresh water tap stands. Our highly experienced volunteers briefed senior Sierra Leonean government ministers and the country's president on our work.

On a regional level, two MapAction volunteers have been working on data management for the United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency Response in Accra, Ghana. A further volunteer has recently deployed to Mali to support preparedness activities to pre-empt and contain any future outbreak in-country.

Alongside this work in the affected area, MapAction is also supporting the Digital Humanitarian Network (DHN) – a network of volunteer-based information management organisations like ourselves. One of our volunteers is currently holding the post of Network Coordinator. MapAction is also hosting the online network on our server, enabling round-the-clock communication between members globally on data sourcing and management.

Thanks to the support of the UK Department for International Development (DFID) we are funding an Ebola response coordinator for DHN for six months. The role is supporting humanitarian responders by facilitating effective information-sharing.

 
Run the London Marathon for MapAction

UK, 15 Dec - Final chance to run the London Marathon for MapAction! The charity has been lucky enough to secure guaranteed places in the Virgin London Marathon for next April. You can find out more about what it means to join Team MapAction and register your interest at: www.mapaction.org/marathon.

Places are limited, so please register by 12pm GMT Wednesday 17 December to be in with a chance of joining Team MapAction!

 
MapAction continues to support Ebola response

Bamako and Accra, 10 Dec - In response to the ongoing Ebola outbreak in West Africa, MapAction has deployed two further skilled volunteers to the region - bringing the total deployed since September to 13.

Following on from an earlier mission, a MapAction volunteer has deployed to Ghana to support the regional response being coordinated by United Nations’ Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER). UNMEER is the first ever UN mission for a public health emergency and has the stated aims of stopping the spread of the disease, treating infected patients, ensuring essential services, preserving stability, and preventing the spread of Ebola to unaffected countries. Although progress has been made in establishing treatment centres and tracing transmission routes, it remains a priority to establish the information flows and data management structure which is where MapAction's expertise will be of particular benefit.

A second volunteer has deployed to Mali to help government authorities prepare for the risk of a future Ebola outbreak. Although 8 cases have already been reported in Mali, thus far they have been successfully contained. This mission is therefore to provide expertise in data preparedness and emergency mapping skills so that authorities can establish an Emergency Operations Centre and are prepared to respond if a more significant outbreak ensues.

According to the World Health Organization, 17,145 confirmed, probable, and suspected cases have been reported within this current Ebola outbreak up to the end of 30 November 2014. There have been 6,070 reported deaths.

Jonny Douch, MapAction’s Operations Director, commented: “I am incredibly proud that, as most of the UK busies itself with preparing for Christmas, two MapAction volunteers are stepping up to help in the ongoing battle against Ebola. Both missions will be strategically important. The role within UNMEER will be pivotal in getting to grips with the current outbreak, and the Mali deployment is an exciting opportunity to put measures in place before the situation in-country escalates. In both cases, I am sure that MapAction’s volunteers will make an important difference in helping to tackle this devastating health emergency.”

 
<< Start < Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Next > End >>

Page 1 of 21