In 2011-12 the national president established formal links with ShelterBox as the charitable focus for the year – this endorsement and support was been continued by the following president in 2012-13 and NAHT received a letter of thanks from HRH Duchess of Cornwall for the work the association did in promoting the work of ShetlerBox to schools in the UK. Approaching £500,000 was raised by NAHT members and their schools to support disaster relief.
The following extract highlights their work at any time when international disaster occurs:
We ask ourselves at ShelterBox: What would a family need to survive if they lost everything? We then fill a box with the most essential items. The contents have changed over the past decade as we have evolved and the result is the ShelterBox solution we see today which contains:
At the heart of every ShelterBox is a disaster relief tent for a large family. The tent has been custom designed and made for us by one of the world’s leading tent manufacturers. We believe it is the best disaster relief tent in the world. It is designed to withstand extreme temperatures, intense UV light, high winds and heavy rainfall. Our tents each have partitions that allow families to divide the space in a way that suits them best. Our tents become more than simple shelter; they become homes.
Children affected by disasters have often been subjected to high levels of trauma. Their worlds are turned upside down and their day-to-day lives changed irrevocably. Our boxes contain small gifts for children to help restore a sense of normality. The children’s activity packs we provide contain drawing books, crayons and pens. For children who have lost all their possessions, these simple items become treasures.
A shelter becomes a home when families can live with a degree of comfort. We provide fleece blankets and insulating groundsheets; simple ShelterBox solutions that make a tent much more than just a shelter.
The rebuilding process is fundamental in a family’s survival. Our boxes contain the tools a family needs to take the first steps on the road to recovery. The tool kit we provide contains a hammer, axe, saw, hoe head, pliers and wire cutters. These items enable a family to improve their immediate environment and, when possible, begin repairing and rebuilding the home they were forced to leave.
We believe no corners should be cut when it comes to the business of saving lives. To this end we take great care sourcing every item to ensure it is robust enough to be of lasting value. Every item is durable, practical and brand new. Even the box itself has a variety of purposes and has been used from a water container to a cot for a newborn baby.
A key piece of equipment we deliver is either a wood or multi-fuel burning stove. We want shelters to become homes and a stove is integral to any home. It is where water is boiled, food is cooked and families gather. Alongside the stove we provide pots, pans, cooking utensils, bowls and mugs.
We work to the needs relayed back to us from the field and we are able to send specific stand-alone items should they be requested.
Visit ShelterBox at www.shelterbox.org.