Back in September, Prince Harry took a trip to Norway to surprise aid workers for the group MapAction. The charity, which Prince Harry is Patron, has just released a video of Harry’s time with them.
The short video shows Prince Harry with a volunteer humanitarian mapping team at a major disaster simulation practice.
International aid workers gathered in Norway to complete the exercises. While there, Prince Harry learned about how MapAction uses crucial data from the scene of an emergency and then translates that into a map. This creates a “common operational picture from which to plan and prioritise the response. This service underpins the delivery of emergency response by helping get the right aid to the right areas and people quickly, saving lives”, as described by a press release on the prince’s website.
Describing the charity of which he is Patron, Prince Harry said: “MapAction brings order to chaos. Its unique mapping skills help all the other aid workers in a disaster or emergency.”
Going on to say: “To see highly-skilled individuals give up their time like this is remarkable. Considering how few people there are, it is unbelievable how much they can achieve. It’s the glue that binds everyone together.”
With a team of over 70 trained volunteers, MapAction uses a rehearsed deployment model to keep with the time frame of responding within 24-48 hours of a rapid onset emergency, such as an earthquake or tsunami.
The first mission was the Indian Ocean Tsunami in Sri Lanka in 2004. Since that emergency mission, another 64 have been undertaken by the charity. Some of those being Haiti’s Hurricane Matthew in 2016, the conflict in Nigeria also in 2016, the Nepal earthquakes in 2015, the Mediterranean refugee crisis from 2015 and continuing to this day, and the West African Ebola outbreak in 2014.
In March, Prince Harry also heard a briefing on what MapAction was doing to help the Nepal earthquakes.