October 20, 2014: Last week FIATA held its yearly World Congress in Istanbul, a very successful Congress indeed from many points of view, but surprises were not confined to logistics.
Together with a trove of thematic topics whose account will be given in other Media Releases the FIATA Extended Board and Presidency wishes to underline the exceptional results achieved during the Board Meeting and the following Gala Dinner on Friday night.
During its Board meeting FIATA decided to start a fund to help fight the Ebola outbreak and to place its worldwide resources at the service of the various international bodies that are taking action against the epidemic, but the real breakthrough came during the Gala Dinner where the nearly 1000 participants collected more than US$110.000 to top up the initial donation made available by FIATA itself.
In the world of freight logistics surprises and spontaneity are things to be avoided at all costs and are more often than not considered negative. However, once in a while a little spontaneity on the behalf of logistics professionals is not only positive, but it also makes a difference in the world. Such was the case at the FIATA World Congress in Istanbul.
What started as an off-the-cuff comment in the Advisory Body Safety and Security Meeting about the devastating Ebola situation in West Africa grew into a full-fledge fund garnering vast support and enthusiasm. Evidencing this was the manner in which the fund was announced at the Gala Dinner on Friday night. Within sixty minutes of announcing the FIATA Fund for Ebola Relief, over US$100,000 was pledged by FIATA Members around the world within a very short period of time, all of them standing and coming up onto the stage with their pledges. By the end of the evening the money pledged exceeded US$100.000. This will be transferred and donated to the Red Cross/Red Crescent and Médecines Sans Frontières in an equal portions.
Francesco Parisi, speaking to his Members in the hall, said: "This remarkable and spontaneous endeavour just goes to highlight what quality the FIATA Membership has and what can be accomplished when we enthusiastically combine our strengths and generosity into the action of one determined body with good intentions."
More information on the means and ways to coordinate the efforts will soon appear on the FIATA website.