New Chair appointed: Jo Godsmark

Transaid’s board of trustees has unanimously backed the appointment of Jo Godsmark as Chair of the international development organisation. She takes over from Graeme McFaull, who steps down after six successful years in the role.

Jo became a trustee of Transaid in 2014 and went on to serve as Chair of the finance and management committee. A fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport (CILT) and a chartered engineer, she benefits from extensive experience working within the supply chain across multiple countries. After roles with Masterfoods UK and Mars Inc, Jo went on to form The Supply Chain Design Company in 2006, before merging with Labyrinth Logistics Consulting in 2008. Today she is a Director of Labyrinth Logistics Consulting, and heads up the supply chain division.

Commenting on her appointment, Jo says: “Like many of us, my relationship with Transaid started by making a donation at an industry dinner where Transaid was the beneficiary. Since then I’ve taken part in the Cycle Tanzania challenge in 2015, where I experienced at first-hand what it felt like to be a vulnerable road user.

“I also got to see the impact of Transaid’s professional driving training programme with the National Institute of Transport in Dar es Salaam. I was incredibly moved by what I saw and it reinforced why Transaid has grown a special place in my heart.”

As Chair, Jo will work closely with Gary Forster, Transaid’s Chief Executive, and the organisation’s senior team – which comprises Caroline Barber, Head of Programmes, Valerie Johnson, Head of Finance, Aggie Krasnolucka-Hickman, Head of Marketing and Communications and Justine Tordoff, Head of HR.

Commenting on his tenure as Chairman, Graeme said: “It has been my privilege and honour to be involved with Transaid and I am delighted to pass the chair to Jo. It was very important we put a strong succession plan in place and Jo has been on the board for a couple of years and received unanimous support in her nomination. I am delighted that she will be taking the organisation onwards and upwards.”

Transaid’s patron, HRH The Princess Royal, presented Graeme with a specially commissioned model vehicle to mark his six years as Chairman, made exclusively for Transaid in Malawi. Graeme first became involved with Transaid during his five years as Chief Executive of Wincanton plc. Today, he is the Chairman of Suttons Group, Operating Chairman of Delin Capital and a Non-Executive Director of Wates Group.



RHA cheque marks membership

The Road Haulage Association (RHA) marked its first anniversary as a corporate member of Transaid by presenting our Chief Executive, Gary Forster, with a cheque for £5,354 at the RHA’s annual members’ lunch.

The donation, which was presented by Richard Burnett, the RHA’s CEO, was raised as a result of the company’s new scheme that encourages its members to contribute to Transaid at the start or renewal of their memberships.

“It’s been a phenomenal first year with Transaid and I’m proud to see my colleagues rallying together for a truly great cause. I look forward to our continued partnership and to reflecting on the positive difference we’ve helped Transaid to make to people’s lives in years to come,” said Burnett.

In addition to providing valuable financial backing, the RHA is taking a more active role in its support of Transaid. Notably, Burnett has signed up to the Cycle South Africa challenge in 2017 – a gruelling 450km five-day cycle ride from the Western Cape to Cape Agulhas, the southernmost point of South Africa.

“Our alliance with Transaid has opened up a wealth of hands-on experiences for our employees and I’m really excited about Cycle South Africa. It’s going to be one of the toughest challenges I have ever taken on, but I’m honoured to go out there and push myself in the name of Transaid.”

This August, the RHA’s Technical Director Steve Biddle and Training Manager Bob Auchterlonie will swap their offices for Transaid’s new road safety programme in Malawi. During their two-week secondment, the pair will deliver UK-standard vehicle inspection training to the project’s students.

Gary Forster said: “We are always grateful to our corporate supporters for their incredible efforts which underpin our work in Africa. Their generosity and dedication to challenges, secondments and general fundraising are truly inspiring.

“We would like to thank the RHA for supporting us for the past 12 months and hope that this meaningful partnership continues long into the future.”


Find out more about our corporate members here. 


Yusen Logistics secondee returns

Louise Gunby, an Operations Manager for the Leeds distribution centre at Yusen Logistics, recently completed a three-month secondment to Transaid’s Professional Driver Training project in Zambia. Louise was based at the Industrial Training Centre (ITC) in Zambia, supporting the centre in its aim to reduce the traffic fatalities in sub-Saharan Africa through professional HGV, PSV and forklift truck training. While on secondment, Louise was responsible for helping the ITC team standardise training materials, identify areas of improvement in the teaching, scheduling and planning of training activities, and processing the project’s data.
We spoke to Louise before her return to the UK about the highlights of her secondment. She said: “All the staff at ITC are really cool and friendly, and I have been made to feel really welcome. The variety of work I am doing at ITC keeps me busy and interested, and it’s great just being here and having this opportunity. I love Lusaka and the people, and feel so overwhelmed by the whole experience.”
It was the first time Yusen Logistics has seconded one of its employees to Transaid’s programmes since becoming a member in 2014. Find out more about Yusen, or read more on becoming a Transaid corporate member here.
Photo information: Louise is the second person from the right.

HRH The Princess Royal to visit IFWLA Convention in Liverpool

HRH The Princess Royal, Patron of Transaid, will visit the Annual Convention of the International Federation of Warehousing Logistics Associations (IFWLA) at the Town Hall in Liverpool, Merseyside on Tuesday 2 June 2015.

During the visit, Her Royal Highness will meet representatives from the UK and global logistics community who will be congregating in Liverpool for the Convention and UKWA (United Kingdom Warehousing Association) hosted conference. The Princess will also speak about the importance of international development charity Transaid’s work and support from the International community.

UKWA adopted Transaid as its official charity in 2013. In addition to financial support, UKWA encourages its member companies to contribute directly towards Transaid’s work by providing volunteers to take part in technical secondments overseas.

IFWLA’s President – Derrick Potter, Chairman of Potter Logistics UK, said: “We are honoured and tremendously excited to welcome HRH The Princess Royal to our Convention in Liverpool. A great supporter of the Logistics Sector, Her Royal Highness will see how our global industry is embracing change and creating opportunity, as well as supporting growth around the world.”

The IFWLA Convention’s four-day programme of business and culture is planned for some 250 national and international delegates, comprising manufacturers, retailers, third party logistics (3PL) providers and other supply chain and logistics practitioners.

Bringing together all sides of the global logistics industry, the Convention is under-pinned by a two-day conference to be held on 2-3 June, at Liverpool’s historic Town Hall.

Hosted and organised by UKWA, the UK’s 3PL trade body and voice for the logistics industry, the conference theme is: ‘Change equals new opportunities – the changing face of global logistics, and the opportunities for you’. The Town Hall is only minutes away from the Convention hotel, the Hard Days Night Hotel

Hankook Tire welcome The Princess Royal, Patron of Transaid, to Milton Keynes

The invitation has been extended to HRH The Princess Royal in her role as patron of Transaid, celebrating the charity’s work in identifying, championing and implementing transport solutions which improve access to basic services and economic opportunity for poor people in developing countries. Founded by Save The Children and the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, Transaid works by sharing skills and knowledge with local people to enable them to put in place and then manage efficient transport systems.

Transaid has been Hankook Tyre UK’s charity partner since 2006, with the company providing continued and generous support and contributions throughout the past nine years.  Hankook Tyre UK is also well established as a strong supporter of top class rugby in England, having been an Elite Sponsor of current Aviva Premiership champions Northampton Saints since 2009.

Gary Forster, CEO of Transaid said: “Hankook have been a truly valuable supporter of Transaid over the years contributing to various projects and fundraising initiatives.  It is the support of globally recognised brands such as Hankook that enables us to test and run a range of new transport solutions for people who really need it.  We’re delighted that Hankook and the Northampton Saints joined forces to aid our initiatives and look forward to working together to make a positive impact to many lives across Africa.”

Mr Jong Jin Park, Managing Director of Hankook Tyre UK added: “It gives us great pleasure to welcome HRH The Princess Royal in her role as patron of Transaid as it further cements our long-standing relationship with them in addition to providing our local community with a real sense of pride. It also gives us great pleasure to extend our support even further with the combined efforts of the Northampton Saints, who have been kind enough to work with us in helping to develop additional fundraising activities which will take place later in the season.”

Allan Robson, CEO of Northampton Saints commented: “We’re honored that HRH The Princess Royal will be joining us at stadium MK for what is one of the biggest matches of our season. We have had an excellent relationship with Hankook for a number of years and are delighted to support their charity work in this way. Having HRH The Princess Royal at the game will add to the occasion and make it an even more memorable day for everyone present.”

The game between Northampton Saints and Saracens was a re-match of the 2014 Aviva Premiership final, the first ever that went into extra time and which was eventually decided with a try for Northampton in the final play of the final minute.  Both teams are in the Aviva Premiership’s top four and a memorable encounter is expected that will live up to the match’s ‘Best of English’ billing.  The match on April 25th also formed part of England Rugby 2015’s testing programme, allowing the organisers to test elements of match day delivery at Stadium MK ahead of hosting three Rugby World Cup 2015 matches.

Impact Handling joins Transaid in bid to improve forklift truck safety and efficiency in Africa

Impact Handling has made a new year’s resolution to help improve forklift truck safety and efficiency in Africa, after becoming the first materials handling company to sign-up as a corporate member of international development charity Transaid.

The firm, which is the sole distributor for Cat® Lift Trucks in the UK and Ireland, joins 22 of the transport and logistics industry’s most prestigious names as members. It will initially be focusing its three decades of expertise in supporting Transaid’s professional driver training project in Zambia.

Impact Handling’s backing will include an annual financial donation, support towards Transaid fundraising activities and an expected two-week secondment of a member of staff to deliver vital training in Zambia this summer.

Terry Kendrew, Managing Director of Impact Handling, part of the South African-based Eqstra Group, says: “Materials handling equipment is essential to supporting the safe and efficient growth of trade in Africa; but too often operators jump onto machines without carrying out essential operational checks.

“We want to help Transaid address this issue by training instructors in the simple, but essential, inspections which should be carried out before using a forklift. Equally important is providing managers with advice on planned and preventative maintenance, to ensure they get the best performance and reliability out of their equipment.

“Transaid has already been working to improve forklift truck driver safety through skills-based training initiatives, and we’re delighted to be putting our full support behind them. Anything we can do to help save lives, reduce accidents and boost efficiency is a very worthwhile cause – and we’re confident we can do this through imparting some of our knowledge and expertise,” he adds.

Transaid’s corporate members provide core funding, as well as an opportunity to transfer best practice, skills and knowledge to the developing world through employee placements overseas.

Caroline Barber, Acting CEO at Transaid, explains: “Attracting organisations such as Impact Handling is critical to our continued success. It gives us access to a wealth of expertise – plus monies raised within the industry enable us to test and prove our ideas, before we bid for funds from major international donors.”

Transaid launched its first professional driver training project at the Industrial Training Centre in Zambia in 2008. It initially focused on training HGV and PSV drivers, before adding forklift truck driver training. Transaid also operates similar projects in Tanzania and Uganda.

The charity, which enjoys the patronage of Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal, aims to improve people’s quality of life in the developing world by making transport more available and affordable. It was founded by Save the Children and the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (UK) in 1998.

Transaid’s core work includes creating transport management systems for the public sector and assisting with the provision of professional driving qualification development and the training of driver trainers. It also assists with teaching preventive vehicle maintenance management through community managed transport introducing local, low cost transport solutions including its innovative bicycle ambulance.

HRH The Princess Royal, Patron of Transaid, opens the DHL International Flight Centre at Heathrow

The 52,000 sq ft centre will service United Airlines from the new International Flight Centre, and offer services including procurement, product sourcing, beverage replenishment, food assembly, final mile delivery to the aircraft and a full wash up service of airline catering equipment using the latest sustainable technology.

Addressing over 80 DHL employees at the official opening, Her Royal Highness said: “I’m delighted to be here today, DHL has added lots of value to the airline industry. I also appreciate the huge amount of investment and expertise that has gone into developing your environmental credentials, and it has also been recognised by winning two international environmental awards. Your relationship with Transaid is a unique partnership and I am delighted with the all of the support you are providing the charity and I look forward to hearing how this relationship makes a difference in Africa.”

Transaid Chief Executive Gary Foster added: “Corporate partnerships are essential for Transaid and we’re delighted to have such a key partner like DHL Supply Chain on board.  We’re honoured that our Patron has attended today in recognition of the DHL’s support and we’re looking forward to broadening our involvement even further this year.”

“We’re delighted that Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal has opened the DHL International Flight Centre,” added Paul Richardson, Managing Director – Specialist Services at DHL Supply Chain: “Our investment in the new hub and United Airlines using our long-haul catering expertise proves that DHL is a serious contender in this marketplace. Our unique proposition offers airlines the opportunity to provide a great customer experience through the quality of their food while improving cost control and reducing the environmental impact of their supply chains.”

DHL will continue its support for Transaid, which in 2013 included vehicle donation, shipment and fundraising to help the charity’s programmes in Africa.

The Malcolm Group pledges support to transport charity Transaid

The Malcolm Group, one of the UK’s leading providers of logistics, construction and vehicle maintenance services, has become the newest supporter of international development charity Transaid after joining its corporate membership programme.

The Malcolm Group has signed up as a partner of Transaid for an initial three year period and joins some of the industry’s biggest names as supporters of the charity.

The partnership was officially announced at Multimodal 2014, where Transaid’s patron, Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal, visited The Malcom Group’s stand and welcomed the company to the charity. The Princess Royal also launched the company’s innovative new 50ft container engineered i n parallel with a versatile new trailer which is easily extended to accommodate the latest super-sized containers.

The Malcolm Group’s support will include an annual financial contribution, which will allow Transaid to test and implement new transport solutions in developing countries. The company will also support Transaid in its fundraising initiatives, with staff taking part in the charity’s bespoke cycle challenges, and offering its expertise in a number of overseas projects.

Andrew Malcolm, The Malcolm Group’s Chief Executive, says: “We are delighted to be supporting Transaid. The charity does a fantastic job of improving the lives of so many people and we are looking forward to helping that work continue in whatever way we can.
“Our company slogan is ‘practical solutions, successful partnerships’ and by working with Transaid we very much hope to put this into practice to help the charity achieve its goals.”

Gary Forster, Transaid’s Chief Executive, adds: “Our corporate members are absolutely critical to the success of Transaid’s projects in the developing world.

“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.”

Transport charity to benefit from TfL bus art

Transaid has been chosen as a beneficiary charity for Transport for London’s Year of the Bus 2014 sculpture trail project.

TfL has commissioned 60 sculptures of New Routemaster buses to be painted by established and up and coming artists and displayed across London. The buses will be auctioned off at the end of the year with all proceeds being split between Transaid, Kids Company and the London Transport Museum.

The project is part of TfL’s wider Year of the Bus celebrations. The organisation decided to make 2014 the Year of the Bus, as alongside 60 years of the iconic Routemaster, this year also marks 75 years since the launch of the RT-Type bus and 100 years since the world’s first mass produced motor bus, the B-Type ‘Battle Bus’ which carried soldiers to the frontline during WW1.

The project which is being supported by creative design agency Wild in Art, will see the decorated buses make up five sculpture trails, which will weave their way through London taking participants on a journey and inviting them to discover the sights and sounds of the city, taking in parks, public spaces and tourist attractions.

Gary Forster, Transaid’s Chief Executive, says: “We are delighted to have been chosen as one of the beneficiary charities for such an exciting project. Buses are synonymous with the UK transport industry and the sculpture trail will enable members of the public to find out more about the important role of the bus.

“Transaid runs a number of projects throughout Africa which are centred on improving public transportation and so it feels very fitting that the proceeds of this scheme will allow us to keep those running.”

The sculptures which stand 1m high and 2m wide will be on display across London from September, with the charity auction due to take place at the end of November.

Pullman Fleet Services’ kit and crew hit the roads in Zambia

New diagnostics technology donated by Pullman Fleet Services is being sent to Zambia to help maintain commercial vehicle standards and improve road safety in the country.

The device, valued at more than £3,000, is being accompanied by two Pullman colleagues who will work with Zambia’s Industrial Training Centre (ITC) staff to train them in repairs, maintenance and vehicle diagnostics.

The initiative is part of Transaid’s plan to ensure the ITC fleet of training vehicles, which includes MAN and ERF tractor units, two rigid trucks and a Volvo bus, remains in excellent condition.

Graham Hunter, Pullman’s Managing Director, says: “We hope the new multi marque diagnostics device will make a significant difference to how the ITC maintains its fleet of training vehicles; we’re thrilled to be able to provide this technology, which will advance the capabilities of the centre.”

Pullman Service Manager Tony Deus and Workshop Controller Tony Dobbins are training ITC staff on repairs, maintenance and also plan to cover vehicle diagnostics. Associated diagnostics software has also been donated by Eclipse Automotive, Pullman’s diagnostics supplier, meaning the ITC doesn’t have to worry about any licence renewals or updates.

They said: “To be given the opportunity to partner Transaid in delivering advanced vehicle roadworthiness and maintenance training and making a difference to road safety in a developing country is a rewarding venture. In addition, delivering diagnostics training for the Eclipse multi marque system to colleagues at the ITC for future use in modernising aspects of their repair and maintenance practices really feels like a job well done.’’

“This is the second time Pullman colleagues have volunteered to spend their time sharing our technical expertise in Africa, and I am delighted that we are able to help Transaid in such a practical way”, added Hunter.

Caroline Barber, Transaid’s Acting Chief Executive, adds: “In order for Transaid to keep improving road safety in Africa it is vital that we can call on the support of companies such as Pullman Fleet Services. We are grateful to Pullman for donating their time and skills to develop the expertise of staff at the ITC, which will help improve road safety in Zambia.”

UK training manager raises forklift truck safety standards in Africa

A UK training manager has spent two weeks in Africa raising the teaching standards of forklift truck driving instructors to help ensure newly qualified drivers know how to safely operate the machines.

Melvin England, who works as a Field Training Manager for Mentor Training, was seconded to the National Institute of Training (NIT) in Tanzania to implement a comprehensive education programme as part of his company’s support for international development charity Transaid.

Melvin says: “Forklift trucks can be some of the most dangerous machines, yet a lot of the time operators in Africa have no formal training. By teaching the instructors how best to implement training programmes we are creating a benchmark for which all forklift operators must meet, ensuring they are kept safe when using the machines.”

His work, which forms part of Transaid’s Professional Driver Training Project, included teaching the group of 11 forklift instructors how to safely demonstrate machines to their students, as well as how to put together comprehensive lesson plans. He added: “The dedication of participants to improve their teaching skills was quite breathtaking. Some walked 5km there and back to take part.”

Melvin, whose work represents the first time Mentor Training has been involved in a Transaid initiative, worked alongside Neil Rettie, who is Transaid’s Road Safety Project Manager and based in Tanzania.

Neil says: “We are grateful to Mentor Training for donating their time and skills to develop the expertise of staff at the NIT. Melvin’s efforts have made a significant contribution in raising training standards and capacity of the centre.”

Malagasy health workers on their bikes thanks to DHL

DHL has shipped 880 bicycles to Madagascar to help local community health workers deliver vital medical care in rural areas.

The global logistics leader shipped the bikes more than 5,000 miles around the world on behalf of international development charity, Transaid, which is pioneering a number of projects in the country to help improve people’s access to health facilities.

The bicycles, sourced with the help of Transaid’s partner charity Re-Cycle (Bikes to Africa), are part of a programme which helps local health workers reach more patients and have resources for delivering medical care in remote regions. Before Transaid began supplying bikes, together with a package of training on safe riding and maintenance techniques, health workers had to make difficult journeys through challenging terrain on foot to provide medical care.

Graham Inglis, Chief Development Officer of DHL Supply Chain said: “We are committed to supporting Transaid’s life-saving work across the African continent and to making a lasting difference to the lives of so many people in the countries where the charity operates. I’m therefore delighted to confirm that, through the DHL UK Foundation, we have also successfully secured two years’ funding for Transaid’s Driver Training programme which will both provide our employees with development opportunities and enable them to volunteer their expertise to make a real difference to this much needed programme.”

DHL became a corporate member of Transaid in 2013 and has supported the charity by providing a range of pro bono services; plus it recently donated a tanker trailer to aid driver training in Tanzania. The tanker is already radically reforming the way drivers are trained to manage liquid loads, taking the emphasis away from theoretical learning and enabling more practical experience.

DHL employees have also taken part in Transaid’s fundraising cycle challenges and Graham Inglis is a member of Transaid’s board of trustees – helping the development of the charity at a strategic level. Earlier this year, Transaid’s patron HRH The Princess Royal officially opened DHL’s International Flight Centre and acknowledged the company’s commitment to embracing Transaid’s values.

Caroline Barber, Transaid’s Acting Chief Executive, adds: “In the 12 months since DHL joined Transaid they have helped us achieve so much. In particular their employees have fully embraced Transaid – from support of our overseas projects to giving up their free time to take part in our fundraising events.

“We’re incredibly grateful to DHL for all the support they have provided to us. They are a true example of what being a corporate partner is all about – being willing to share time and experience – which they have done in abundance.”