Mobilisation of the aviation community
In 1968, Air France pilots and flight engineers, deeply affected by the horror of the Nigerian Civil War, decided to take part in rescue operations by providing airlift support. It was at this time that the aviation community realised that it had a special role to play in humanitarian operations. In 1980, Aviation Sans Frontières (Aviation Without Borders) was born. As a key actor in international humanitarian action, Aviation Sans Frontières employs its expertise, its planes and makes use of the air network to send emergency aid from France to its overseas bases, and to transport or escort people all around the world.
Aviation expertise serving humanitarian causes
An officially recognised NGO, Aviation Sans Frontières also has its own planes: Cessna Caravans based in Africa. Using these planes, Aviation Sans Frontières provides crucial logistic support to more than 180 organisations, providing fast and effective humanitarian aid. The organisation is the first NGO to hold a European Air Operator's Certificate (AOC), just like any other certified airline company. Aviation Sans Frontières is a partner of the United Nations Economic and Social Council and the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection.
Missions both overseas and in France
On an international level, Aviation Sans Frontières accompanies hundreds of children in need of emergency health care to Europe each year in order to undergo operations. Aviation Sans Frontières also delivers basic necessities to the most disadvantaged populations and accompanies those who have been granted asylum to their new host country.
In France, Aviation Sans Frontières works in collaboration with 19 flying clubs to allow socially isolated young people and those with disabilities to discover the world of aviation.
In total, Aviation Sans Frontières responds to around twenty requests for humanitarian aid from all around the world every day.
Our team and volunteers
More than 800 volunteers and 13 employees take turns each day to run missions.
- 64 administrative volunteers
- 18 pilots
- 8 mechanics
- 69 permanent volunteers to load health care packages onto our aircrafts
- 376 guides ready, as per their availability, to respond to requests to escort refugees or sick children
- 159 volunteers committed to our Ailes du Sourire (Wings for Smiles) and e-Aviation missions
- 94 volunteers working from our three regional divisions
Translation into English by Julian Malacan
Proof-reading in English by Chloe Anderson within the initiative PerMondo that is coordinated by the translation agency Mondo Agit
Key figures 2018
sick children escorted
parcels shipped to 26 countries
disabled people attended a smiling wings day
tons of emergency relief shipped
youngsters discovered the aeronautics jobs