In December, Agility GIL Japan assisted the Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF) with an urgent shipment of 20,000 sets of personal protective equipment from Komaki Air Base to Accra, Ghana in West Africa.

The equipment, mainly suits for healthcare workers, caregivers and others working to stop the spread of Ebola, was donated by the Japanese government in response to a request from the United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER).

In the fall, UNMEER established its headquarters in Accra. The latest outbreak of Ebola has claimed more than 6,000 lives, mainly in the West African nations of Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea. Japan has agreed to donate 700,000 sets of personal protective equipment to UNMEER and to make financial contributions and offer other assistance aimed at battling the epidemic and strengthening the health systems in affected countries. Lack of protective suits and other gear has hampered the international response to the Ebola outbreak.

“We must stop this outbreak any way we can,” said Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. “Japan is determined to put forth its best in the fight against the Ebola virus disease.”

The Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF) had the 20,000 donated suits moved from a warehouse in Shinagawa to Komaki outside Nagoya, where the cargo was loaded onto a JSDF KC-767 airplane. Agility GIL Japan assisted the JSDF by managing the ground handling at stops along the way. The flight made stops at Male in the Indian Ocean and Djibouti in East Africa before making the final leg of the journey to Accra, where Agility again managed ground handling and the shipment was cleared and moved to a warehouse.

Yoshimichi Yoneda, Agility Japan Managing Director, was on the tarmac at Accra to make sure the shipment was unloaded and moved as planned. “Our role was to provide ground handling and to make sure nothing prevented this life-saving equipment from getting to where it is needed. We are glad we were able to help Japan make a difference in the effort to stop Ebola,” he said.