A speech by Prince Harry, Patron, at a Map Action reception

Published 11 June 2015

It is a very humble organisation and it would be all too easy for its crucial contribution to go unnoticed.

I am delighted to be with you this evening.

Thank you Sherry and William for inviting us and, thank you Jonny, Ant and Andy for your fascinating insights into MapAction’s recent work.

I’m sure everyone shares my admiration for the courage shown by MapAction’s volunteers in responding so readily to the Ebola outbreak – this is nothing less than I have come to expect from them over my years as Patron.

The recent Ebola outbreak is an unusual and extreme example, but one that demonstrates all too clearly the critical value of mapped analysis to address highly complex humanitarian challenges.

It was gratifying to hear tonight an external perspective on the importance of MapAction’s work for key responders like the UK’s Department for International Development and other humanitarian providers. Well-informed decisions are fundamental to effective humanitarian response– they can and do make a vital contribution to saving lives.

Sadly, as the global context becomes increasingly unpredictable and volatile with many millions of men, women and children affected daily, the need for MapAction’s service is growing.

The organisation is at a pivotal point in its evolution where it has the opportunity to do more – considerably more – to help save lives in humanitarian emergencies.

As we have heard this evening, MapAction has set itself the ambitious target of doubling its response capacity by 2019.

It has the team and expertise in place to rise to this challenge, but it will need support from all of us.

I am extremely proud to be Patron of MapAction.

It is a very humble organisation and it would be all too easy for its crucial contribution to go unnoticed.

But I know from speaking to MapAction’s partners that its humanitarian mapping service has become a core asset to any co-ordinated relief operation. This contribution can only be achieved by the remarkable commitment of the charity’s volunteers.

This evening we have an opportunity to meet some of those who deployed to the Ebola outbreak.

I have every confidence that once you get to know MapAction and its amazing team, like me, you will be gripped and want to do whatever you can to support its vital work.