Eutelsat Communications is collaborating with NetHope to improve connectivity solutions for humanitarian organisations mobilised in West Africa since the outbreak of the Ebola crisis.
Satellite broadband equipment that will deliver videoconferencing services, Internet access and voice communications has arrived in Accra, Ghana, where the U.N. has located its Mission for Ebola Emergency Response.
The terminals are now headed to Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea to be deployed in areas with little-to-no-existing communications capacity with the intention of helping aid workers curb the spread of Ebola.
Communicating direct to a Eutelsat satellite, the terminals will be able to deliver 1.2 terabytes of data over the coming six months. They will enable doctors and healthcare workers to benefit from a robust communications network that can be self-installed, is up and running in less than two hours and can be easily relocated to follow relief organisations working on the frontline.
Established in 2001, NetHope’s mission is to help humanitarian organisations benefit from the best information communication technology so they can focus on their mission of serving people during crises such as the Ebola epidemic where aid workers say limited Internet and data connectivity in isolated areas is a significant obstacle to relief. Improving communications between organisations and their field offices in remote parts of the world where infrastructure is limited or absent is a key strategic focus for NetHope.
“Communications is an essential resource during times of crisis,” said Frank Schott, NetHope managing director of Global Programs.“Eutelsat’s contributions of equipment and technical expertise will help emergency responders working in West Africa to coordinate the delivery of life-saving patient and family care services. Our work wouldn’t be possible without partners like Eutelsat.”