Probably the best part of the Denton Program is that it's free to the user. Charity organizations only assume the costs involved in procurement, packaging, ground transportation, and distribution. The obvious advantage from all of this is that funds, that otherwise would have been used for shipping costs, can now be directed to more needed materials or greater outreach.
For those organizations that have previously shipped via commercial means, you are likely familiar with the risk of cargo pilferage during transit. One of the great benefits of the Denton Program is that your shipment remains in the control of the U.S. Military until it is handed over to your in-country consignee which means everything you ship fully arrives.
When dealing with a host nation's, clearance and security elements, the authority of the U.S. Federal Government carries sway. The Denton Program application process, through the Denton program and USAID offices, ensure that host nation cargo compliance, and documentation requirements have been met.
In order for U.S. military airlift aircraft to land at an international location to delivery humanitarian cargo, either a host country basing agreement, or security provisions, at a commercial or otherwise suitable airport, is required. Aid flights, to secure locations, facilitate the uncompromised delivery and processing of arriving shipments.
Being that the Denton Program is a congressionally mandated program, with oversight coordinated through several U.S. Government agencies, the approval processes have been well established. Though somewhat cumbersome, the Denton Program process ensures that all shipments are conducted properly and all charities submissions are treated equally.
Generally, the program is not designed or intended for the transport of private sector commodity donations to disaster areas -- where civil systems, local infrastructure or logistics resources may be compromised due to a natural or civil disaster. In such cases, United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Department of State (DoS) and Department of Defense (DoD) will review the circumstances in the destination country, and the application, to determine whether or not a commodity donation should be transported by DAP to the area of the disaster.
USAID reviews applications to ensure they meet foreign policy objectives and that the donation meets a legitimate humanitarian need in line with country specific requirements. In FY 2010, nearly 2 million pounds of humanitarian goods were sent to eligible countries through the DAP.
Intended humanitarian cargo must pass the litmus test of legitimacy showing that that the supplies are for the people for whom they are intended, in useable condition, consistent with U.S. foreign policy, that the beneficiaries are capable of using the donated commodities safely and that the amount of cargo (per application) weighs between 2,000 and 100,000 pounds. Average Application Processing Time:4-6 weeks
The Denton Program is not for religious or political material, troop donations, crisis response, soccer balls & toys, expired food or expired medical supplies.
The Denton Program is a space available program and no guarantees can be made regarding availability of transportation, or completion of, a shipment. The program is active in most areas of the world but it is more difficult to obtain transportation to more distant countries. Current political situations notwithstanding, transportation is now most frequently available to Iraq, Kazakhstan, Central and South American, the Caribbean, and Djibouti. Transportation to some Asian countries and other African countries, may be provided on a case-by-case basis.
Phase 1 consists of establishing needs followed by material collection where donor charities accumulate humanitarian materials, and store at a single location for packaging and official inspection. Next, the charity organizations will establish a Denton Amendment account to begin the application process. With the inspection complete, the goods will next be prepared for ground transport (arranged by donor organization) to a designated airport/airbase for air-shipment preparation and subsequent loading aboard a military aircraft.
Phase 2 begins with the hand-off of humanitarian goods to a certified military aerial port operation at the designated airport or airbase facility. Once entered into the airlift system, the cargo will be scheduled to be transported and transshipped by space-available military designated airlift that will deliver the cargo to its final destination. Upon arrival, the cargo will be downloaded and stored (temporarily) until the pre-designated consignee can make arrangements to take delivery of the cargo.
Phase 3 occurs in-country after the host-country customs clearances have been completed. The palletized cargo will then be broken down for upload onto the consignee’s provided transportation.
The purpose of the Denton Program is to allow U.S. based non-governmental sources to transport humanitarian aid at little or no cost to the donor, while simultaneously putting the extra space on U.S. military transport assets to good use. This program is jointly administered by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), Department of State (DOS) and Department of Defense (DOD). Transportation is generally available to close destinations such as Latin and South America; however, the availability of transportation to particular countries is affected by current military and political situations. Transportation can neither be scheduled nor guaranteed; and therefore, cannot be used to meet urgent needs or deadlines.