Astral Aviation has signed its first formal partnership agreement with disaster response nonprofit Airlink. "In the agreement, Astral Aviation promises to transport 50 tonnes of humanitarian aid over the next year," says a release from Airlink.

Airlink will utilise the cargo space to support the movement of humanitarian aid across Astral Aviation’s network, already leveraging this partnership in order to support a shipment of medicines and medical supplies to South Sudan, the release added. "The supplies were donated by Airlink’s NGO partner, Partners for World Health, to an additional member of Airlink’s network, IMA World Health, and will be distributed in flood-affected regions in the Greater Upper Nile region as well as in health facilities along South Sudan’s border with Uganda."

Sanjeev Gadhia, CEO, Astral Aviation and Bethany Holland, Senior Manager, Humanitarian Programmes, Airlink

Sanjeev Gadhia, CEO, Astral Aviation says: “As Astral Aviation, we see the partnership with Airlink as an important opportunity to support some of the humanitarian efforts in the Sub-Saharan region so as to help alleviate the suffering on some of the war-ravaged and disaster stricken population."

Steven J. Smith, President and CEO, Airlink adds: “The humanitarian nonprofit community is under huge resource pressures stemming from Covid responses, the war in Ukraine, inflation, and economic downturns. Airline commitments like the one Astral Aviation is making allow Airlink and our nonprofit partners to react to immediate needs. It also enables us to support communities with long-term recovery and systemic issues such as in healthcare."

Since 2010, Airlink has saved its nonprofit partners over $12 million in air transport costs, resources which these nonprofit network partners could redirect to buying humanitarian aid and funding service delivery, the release said. "In 2022, Airlink responded to more than 40 emergencies, providing transport for 1,300 skilled responders and over 1,400 tonnes of humanitarian aid. The aid transported reached more than 12.5 million people."

Astral Aviation operates a network that connects East Africa to the Middle East, Asia, and Europe via hubs in Nairobi, Johannesburg and Dubai with its fleet of 15 cargo aircrafts, the release added.

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