Humanitarian logistics

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The basic task of humanitarian logistics comprises acquiring and delivering requested supplies and services, at the places and times they are needed, whilst ensuring best value for money. In the immediate aftermath of any disaster, these supplies include items that are vital for survival, such as food, water, temporary shelter and medicine, among others.

The Global Logistics Service (GLS) of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is a recognized provider of humanitarian logistics services. The key mission of GLS is to support the core work of the Red Cross Red Crescent network, which reaches 150 million people each year through 189 member National Societies. The GLS also offers those services on a non-profit basis to third parties in the humanitarian sector and to governments.

The worldwide activities of the IFRC Global Logistics Service focus on three strategic objectives:

  1. support the enhancement of National Society logistics capacities
  2. increase the IFRC’s logistics capacity to deliver logistics services for preparedness and operational activities
  3. provide agreed logistics services to third parties in the humanitarian sector

The volume of GLS business grows in line with emerging humanitarian needs. On average, since 2007 the GLS through its global network has yearly mobilized and delivered over 220 million Swiss francs’ worth of humanitarian aid. We hold pre-positioned stock capable of meeting the immediate needs of 450,000 people at any time. When emergencies strike, these supplies can be delivered to affected areas anywhere in the world within 24-48 hours. Per month, the GLS supports 60 humanitarian operations across the world.

A team you can trust

The IFRC global logistics services are built on 90 years of experience of delivering humanitarian aid. Since 2005, in recognition of our global logistics expertise, the IFRC was accredited by the Directorate General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO) as a humanitarian procurement centre. Similarly, our excellence in logistics was recognized in 2006, when the GLS was declared the overall winner of the European Supply Chain Excellence Award, competing against strong candidates from the commercial sector.

Global Logistics Service
Procurement portal

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is the world's largest humanitarian organization, with 190 member National Societies. As part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, our work is guided by seven fundamental principles; humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity and universality. About this site & copyright