News: The 182nd’s Service in Humanitarian Relief Efforts
Story by Staff Sgt. Lealan Buehrer
PEORIA, Ill. - In a true sense of benevolence, the United States conducts initiatives that support impoverished nations who have been plagued by disaster and turmoil. One of these platforms is the Denton Program, which, as described by the Department of Defense, is made “to allow U.S. based non-governmental sources to transport humanitarian aid at little or no cost to the donor, while simultaneously putting the extra space on U.S. military transport assets to good use”. In coordination with United States Southern and Central Commands and the United States Agency for International Development, the 182nd Airlift Wing plays a continuing role in mending several of these afflicted countries.
“From our standpoint here on base, what we do is we support NGOs (non-governmental organizations) in their efforts to provide humanitarian relief to various countries or peoples in the world,” Lieutenant Colonel Daniel Tingwall, Operations Officer for the 182nd Logistics Readiness Squadron, explains. “The government said ‘You get the stuff together as part of humanitarian relief, we’ll fly it down’…It’s turned out well, a lot of work goes into it. I’m sure those people on the receiving end are lot better off for getting those clothes, shoes and the simple things are included in there that we take for granted here, such as toothpaste and toothbrushes.”
According to the United States Southern Command, the Republic of Haiti suffered a cataclysmic magnitude seven earthquake in January of 2010 that killed hundreds of thousands and left millions in need. In the advent of the disaster, non-governmental organizations stepped up to assist the Caribbean island nation through the Denton Program. The 182nd Small Air Terminal, 182nd Logistics Readiness Squadron, at the Peoria Air National Guard Base has been participating in Denton Program since 2010 to provide military opportune airlift for relief effort donations. Materials are packaged at the 182nd for air transportation, flown to Charleston Air Force Base, and then shipped to the citizens of Haiti. To date, the 182nd has transported over 121 tons of cargo, to include food, water, medical provisions, building materials, school supplies, and clothing. Additionally, resources have been shipped through the Denton Program from the Peoria Air National Guard Base to the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan as the United States continues Operation Enduring Freedom operations.
More information about the Denton Program can be found at http://transition.usaid.gov/our_work/cross-cutting_programs/private_voluntary_cooperation/denton.html. Ms. Phyllis Marshall, Program Manager for the Denton Program and Funded Transportation, can be contacted at 703-601-3854 or Phylliss.Marshall@dsca.mil.