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Global Missions - When Missionaries and Telecommunications Unite
At present, many of us have the privilege of being able to connect to friends, family and coworkers all over the world with the push of a button. What once seemed unfathomable less than half a century ago, global connectivity now is as commonplace as a standard telephone.
But there are still parts of the world that don’t have the privilege of having telephones. The result is that individuals and organizations who have dedicated their lives to making the world a better place have a difficult time staying connected.
Evangelical and medical missionaries frequently live and work in areas of the world that are underserved—or not at all served—by landline or cellular communications. Whether career missionaries representing a major denomination, a coterie of nurses and doctors volunteering a year of service in Africa, or a local church group on a ten-day mission to Haiti, these people need reliable satellite communications.
Most people see a humanitarian mission’s crowning achievement—such as rebuilding a bridge or reconstructing a devastated village—without understanding the logistics involved in such an undertaking. The fact is the quality of communications and connectivity is central to the success of any large scale mission or disaster relief plan.
With the satellite communication world rapidly evolving towards offering a more diverse set of services, how can evangelical and medical missionaries be savvy enough to know which of these services they need based on their locale? They turn to experts in satellite communications.
Case Study—the Preferred Communications Model
In business for more than a decade, Preferred Communications provides voice, fax and data satellite communications services, including automatic vehicle location systems, auto-navigation systems, global positioning systems and more. The company even contracts for the Department of Defense’s satellite communications needs.
Because of this experience, Preferred Communications knows that relief and evangelical missions deployed to beleaguered regions need more than goodwill and a strong strategic plan for assisting those in need. They may be lacking people with a solid knowledge of satellite telecommunications. Since Preferred Communications represents all major satellite telecommunications manufacturers and network providers they:
1. Offer the options of rental or purchase.
2. Assist in determining what equipment and services will best suit their needs, depending upon geographical location and level of service needed (e.g., voice service only, e-mail and high-speed data).
3. Offer value-added services such as 24-hour worldwide support, USA access numbers, voice mail, and data compression software.
4. Provide on-site product demonstration and instruction in the use of their equipment as needed.
5. Provide remote account management (such as activations, airtime uploads and account monitoring) through online interfaces with their supporting networks.
Because of the great scope of Preferred Communication’s services, humanitarian organizations have been able to more efficiently manage their remote telecommunications.
Assistance of this nature enables field personnel to carry out their primary missions more efficiently by maintaining contact with their supporting organizations (often on another continent), and by facilitating communications within their region of service. Collectively this type of cooperation can make things once considered impossible very feasible as well as bringing far off, remote places closer.
About the Author: Preferred Communications is a DOD registered contractor specializing in satellite communications, automatic vehicle location systems, auto-navigation systems, global positioning system devices and business long distance services.