The nature of disaster relief means that volunteers and workers need to be able to respond with speed and flexibility to changing conditions in order to best help victims. People coming to help respond to a disaster need to be able to quickly buy airline tickets and book hotel rooms. And once there, the people on the ground will need to purchase food and supplies when banks might not be back up and running, making payment for these purchases a logistical challenge.
One way for relief organizations to quickly get these funds out to the teams is to use a prepaid debit card program like PEX Card. Money can be put on the cards in real time, anywhere in the world, getting purchasing power into the hands that need it. In addition, volunteers can be given new cards quickly and they can be deactivated when no longer needed.
Having a prepaid card system in place before heading into a disaster zone can be vital to hit the ground running. Prepaid cards are also very useful during post-disaster reconstruction efforts. This will be important, for instance, in earthquake and tsunami struck Japan for years to come, as the country recovers and rebuilds.
Toffer Grant is PEX's Founder and CEO. He founded PEX in 2006 as a prepaid card solution for small businesses. His background in the prepaid industry began at Clarity Payment Solutions, where he initiated 65 prepaid card programs in consumer, corporate, and emerging verticals of the prepaid card industry.