Joy about arriving aid is overwhelming

by Florian Klinner/RBU,  2011/08/01

Yesterday, on Sunday, the first humedica relief flight arrived in Nairobi, Kenya. CEO Wolfgang Groß and employee Florian Klinner from the humedica headquarters were on board in order to organise the relief goods distributions and to assess further ways to help. Florian Klinner tells about the relief goods transport to Nairobi.

CEO Wolfgang Groß (left in the picture) and Florian Klinner at Nairobi Airport. Photo: humedica/Thomas Grabka

"It´s really going to be very cold at your place" – those were the words of the freight master when he closed the door to our cabin in the tail of the cargo plane to Nairobi. Our seats had had to be flown in from England to Munich beforehand, only for this humedica relief flight.

The freight master also said that it was very uncommon for passengers to be transported on board a cargo plane. This was also the reason for the plane not being equipped with toilets; we had to do without this comfort during the twelve hour’s flight.

After we had made ourselves comfortable in the especially flown-in seats, the cabin went dark and after about thirty minutes the plane began to move towards the runway – we could not see much through the small and misted hatches.

With a noise louder than I have ever experienced before, the four turbines of the plane of the series Douglas DC-8 started and lifted the immense cargo machine that was loaded with more than 30 tons of relief goods into the sky and we were on the way to the Horn of Africa.

Since a plane like this one is – as mentioned before – not intended to transport passengers in the cargo compartment, there was no heating on board, which soon lead to very low temperatures. But what is the cold compared to the suffering of the starving people for whom we are doing all this and we simply opposed the freezing cold with blankets, sleeping bags and jackets.

Joining efforts for unloading the humedica relief cargo. Photo: humedica/Florian Klinner

After a flight of seven hours we touched down with a heavy impact in the city of Kartoum in Sudan in order to refill our fuel tank. None of us was prepared for the landing, we could hardly see anything through the hatches and the abrupt touch down surprised all of us.

But here, too, everything went smoothly and after refuelling the plane started once more and eventually reached its destination and touched down at Nairobi international airport at 7 o’clock local time (note: 6 o’clock central European time).

Numerous highly committed airport employees immediately came to assist with unloading the plane and to welcome us. Again and again they told us how glad they were because we supported the people in their country and how grateful they were for this help.

In presence of the Ministry Representative Esther Murugi Mathenge, who is in charge of fighting the famine in Kenya, and the Vice President, His Excellency Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka, our relief goods were unloaded and further joint measures and steps were discussed.

The first measure planned is a visit to the Turkana Region in the north of Kenya. As far as we know by now there are mostly national refugees, i.e. people from Kenya, in this region, who are affected strongly by draught and famine themselves.

Tomorrow, on Tuesday, the relief goods we could import from Germany thanks to numerous committed companies and private donors will be sent onto the second stage of their journey by land, towards their final destination: the Dadaab Region, the region that currently counts the largest number of refugees worldwide.”

Checking and planning together with Ministry Representative Esther Murugi Mathenge and Vice President His Excellency Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka. Photo: humedica/Thomas Grabka

Dear friends and sponsors of our work: we ourselves are often deeply touched by all the support we receive and by the trust you put in us and our work. Thank you very much for all the help you have offered so far. Please stay at our side also in future.

      humedica e.V.
      Donation reference „Famine relief Africa
      Account 47 47
      Bank Code 734 500 00
      Sparkasse Kaufbeuren

You can also support our relief measures at the Horn of Africa by means of making a donation via our online form or by sending a text message: send the reference DOC to +49 8 11 90 and support us with a donation of 5 euros, with 4.83 euros of this amount being directly channelled into the humedica relief projects. Thank you very much!

We would like to thank Sternstunden e.V. and the Munich Airport in particular for supporting us and enabling us to implement this relief flight. Furthermore, we would like to thank all donor companies, as well as Apotheker helfen e.V. and the drug-donation relief organisation action medeor.

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