Nigel Press, MapAction

Our members were told of a mapping initiative whose professional volunteers are ready, at a moment’s notice, to fly abroad to bring relief to disaster zones.
Nigel Press, chairman of Map Action, explained it was an international disaster mapping charity working to ensure humanitarian responders have access to up to date maps and data.
He gave as an example an urban area hit by an earthquake where Map Action flew in to specify, with maps, which areas where the rescue workers could operate so that each group knew where to work.
“We help to make order out of chaos,” said Mr Press.
He said the Map Action team was one hundred strong, with ten staff, who were able to ask their employers to release them to fly out, at a moment’s notice, with technical equipment and data to a disaster area hit by an earthquake or a cyclone. The 15-year-old charity, he said, was financed by supporters and by international governments.
The professionally trained, skilled and dedicated volunteers, employed in a range of professions, regularly took part in simulated disaster exercises.

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