Thursday, May 1, 2014

Princess Royal Praises Road Haulage, Freight Forwarding and Logistics Sponsors

Transport Charity Transaid Very Publicly Gains a New Supporter at Multimodal
Shipping News Feature

UK – AFRICA – The list of road haulage, freight forwarding and logistics companies willing to back the fundraising of transport charity Transaid continues to grow and the latest company to offer assistance, the Malcolm Group, managed to attain the personal approval of the organisation’s actively involved patron, Her Royal Highness the Princess Royal, during her visit to Multimodal 2014.

The Malcolm Group has signed up as a corporate membership partner of Transaid for an initial three year period and joins some of the industry’s biggest names as supporters of the charity. The Princess Royal also visited the company’s stand and also launched the company’s innovative new 50ft container, engineered in parallel with a versatile new trailer which is easily extended to accommodate the latest super-sized containers following the Transaid Multimodal seminar at which she was the guest speaker.

Malcolm Group CEO, Andrew Malcolm said the company was delighted to support Transaid which does a fantastic job of improving the lives of so many people, adding that, as stated in the company slogan - ‘practical solutions, successful partnerships’ - it very much hoped to put this into practice to help the charity achieve its goals. Gary Forster, CEO of Transaid, pointed out how the corporate members were absolutely critical to the success of Transaid’s projects in the developing world, adding:

“We are incredibly grateful that the Malcolm Group has chosen to support Transaid. Their input, not only with monetary donations, but through the valuable experience from the company’s staff will be hugely beneficial to Transaid when planning and implementing new projects overseas.”

In a speech which highlighted just how Princess Anne is in touch with those she favours with her patronage, she pointed out that despite some excellent work done historically by many other charities, they had often been remiss in leaving the question of logistics out of the equation. She said Transaid filled ‘an enormous gap’ and set a good example of how it was essential to concentrate on the logistics chain and impressing the importance of reliable transport on other aid organisations.

She continued, saying that before Transaid’s involvement the lack of a proper cold chain meant the loss of essential pharmaceuticals and fresh foodstuffs but others had now seen fit to grasp the issue and deal with it. The Princess Royal said she was grateful to all the corporate sponsors and to the wave of ‘remarkable volunteers’ and to the Zambian government, remarking how a look at the region’s accident figures showed ‘how far we have come’.

The Princess said that working with organisations such as Save the Children Fund, who founded Transaid in cooperation with the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) UK, helped spread the word to other agencies bringing about mutual help and support whilst linking together aid and logistics, with events such as Multimodal helping to get the message across.

The Princess Royal thanked Norbert Dentressangle for the company’s ongoing support for the charity following a presentation of the group’s work which included how it has assisted with the Independent Training Centre in Lusaka and the French group’s ongoing graduate training scheme in which young graduates had been sent to Africa to assist and gain experience.

Gary Forster illustrated how the charity was often able to scale up the funding given by the freight community by investing in schemes which could lead to other sources of revenue up to ten times the original investment after the initial model had proved successful. Transaid was able to offer such evidence to organisations such as Comic Relief, the World Bank and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation thus giving them the confidence to help out.

The seminar was chaired by Theo de Pencier, Chief Executive of the Freight Transport Association (FTA) and, upon calling for questions from the floor, a discussion commenced which highlighted both the objectives and the current requirements of Transaid. To continue and expand the charity’s three core areas of work, in improving road safety, opening faster and more efficient agricultural supply chains and promoting access to health, there are some basic needs which only logistics industry players can supply.

In order to share knowledge and empower other organisations locally Transaid needs all the help it can get in transporting vital equipment, such as vehicles and fork lift trucks, to the regions that need them. There is a constant demand for HGV and PSV trainers and also for people able to communicate the problems associated with ADR cargo. Sponsorship of Transaid conveys a company image which any PR Executive would welcome and one never knows, you could get to meet Royalty!

Photo: The Princess Royal unveils a commemorative plaque celebrating The Malcolm Group’s new products.