Shelter and protection

When disaster strikes and families lose their homes, durable tents can offer shelter and a sense of safety and normality – a place to call home.

Families caught up in disaster need the best possible support to allow them to recover and rebuild their lives. 

That’s why we’re committed to listening to what families need and continually improving to offer the best support we can. We’re constantly evaluating our tents ensuring they are suitable for the families we support.

Larger tents allow families to live as comfortably as possible and meet their basic needs – eating together, praying together – simply being together in a private space they can call home.

But we don’t believe that one size fits all. We work hard to understand the impact of each emergency and the need this creates within individual communities. We currently provide five different tents to families affected by disaster, depending on the context and the individual needs.

Our tents offer more than just protection from the weather – for families who’ve lost so much, a tent is nothing short of a temporary home.

Prepared for the unexpected

When disaster strikes, families need shelter and protection. Depending on the weather and the place, the needs of families differ. 

In Syria, for example, winter temperatures usually plummet below zero. This leaves families in an unimaginable situation if they face the freezing winter without a home.

Our winterisation projects support families with clothing, warm blankets, thick mattresses, and other aid items that families might need to face the freezing cold.

They also include tents which are insulated using a winterisation kit, so that they can be used in the winter.

These tents can withstand the cold, providing families with warmth and protection during the freezing winter months.

A sense of comfort after disaster


Lino lived a peaceful life in Sulawesi with her family. But in September 2018, a powerful earthquake shook the island and their lives.

The family’s home was severely damaged, so they had to abandon it. They had been staying in a deserted field before they received a ShelterBox tent and other essential aid items. The tent allowed them to move back to where their home once stood and start rebuilding, and gave them a sense of comfort knowing that they were close to where their home used to be. Lino says:

Now we have the tent, we still feel scared, but we feel happy. We have comfort now.

Constantly refined

Families who have lost their homes in disaster or forced to flee conflict deserve the best possible emergency shelter support available. We are committed to doing just that.

That’s why we have added an additional tent to the range of tents we offer, called the Geodesic Family Tent. It has been developed by humanitarian experts including the IFRC, ICRC and UNHCR.

Made to withstand severe conditions, these shelters see roaring winds, beating heat, and freezing conditions.

They are also made of well-proven, durable humanitarian tarpaulin to help make families feel safe and protected from the weather.  The tent is well insulated to keep families cool in hot climates. They will help to keep disaster-hit families as comfortable as possible.

Our tents have the power to transform lives. They’re more than just canvas and pegs – they can become a home. A place where family and friends come together. An anchor in your community. 

We are always looking for the best ways to support families who have lost their homes to disaster. That’s why we adapt and change over time to make sure we keep on providing the best possible support to the families who need it.

Designed for protection

1. Wind
ShelterBox tents are tested in winds up to 100kmh where, even without guy ropes, they remain sturdy.

2. Rain
The high spec, waterproof outer keeps the interior dry, even in driving rains.

3. Stress
Flexible tent poles reduce damage from impact and are designed to be pitched and taken down again several times to allow families to be flexible with where they settle.

4. Heat
A reflective exterior shields from UV light, while ventilation windows allow the breeze to roll in.

5. Cold
When paired with the winterised tent liner, they can help protect against the freezing cold.

Comfortable and warm again


Asala lives her with mother and siblings in a displacement camp in Syria. They had to leave their home as it became too dangerous to stay there. She told us:

“Before we got a private tent for us as a family, the life was unbearable, neither me or anyone was able to sleep comfortably or deeply during the night. 

Now with our own tent and household items, the situation is better. At least we can feel comfortable and warm at night.

Although it’s a small tent, it’s like a palace for me. What really concerns me now is getting back to school, so I can continue my study. If I didn’t study I won’t be able to work and secure my and my family’s needs in the future, like what my mum did.”

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