A Lifeline To Save Lives
No one should have to risk their life to reach safety: that’s why MOAS delivers aid and assistance along the world’s most dangerous migration routes.
Founded by the Catrambone family in response to a shipwreck off the Italian island of Lampedusa that killed over 360 people in October 2013, MOAS aims to provide a model for the engagement of civil society in tackling humanitarian crises around the world.
Upon launching its first mission in August 2014, MOAS was the first non-governmental organisation to run a Search and Rescue operation in the Mediterranean. Over the course of three years at sea, MOAS rescued and assisted more than 40,000 children, women and men in the Central Mediterranean and Aegean.
Having suspended SAR operations in August 2017, MOAS continues to monitor the situation at sea, and to advocate for the creation of safe and legal routes to protect desperate people seeking peace and security. In December 2017, in partnership with UNHCR, we organised an aerial evacuation mission to fly 74 vulnerable individuals out of Libya to safety in Niger.
In September 2017 we shifted our operational focus to Bangladesh, where we delivered 40 tonnes of humanitarian aid to support the government’s response to a massive influx of Rohingya refugees fleeing violence in Myanmar. Our team in Cox’s Bazar set up two Aid Stations, or primary health centres, to serve the refugee camps of Shamlapur and Unchiprang, as well as the local Bangladeshi communities.
To December 2018, the MOAS Aid Stations provided vital care and medication to over 90,000 patients. In April 2018, following reported sightings of Rohingya attempting to flee Myanmar by boat, we also ran a month-long observation mission in the Andaman Sea, drawing international attention to the need for a coordinated Search and Rescue strategy in the region.
Our mission in Bangladesh is now focused on delivering Flood and Water Safety Training to Rohingya volunteers, empowering refugees to support their own communities in preparing for the dangers of the monsoon season. Meanwhile, we have launched a new mission to Yemen, where we are delivering life-saving pharmaceutical aid and famine relief to the port of Aden.