FIRE - Flagstaff International Relief Effort

FIRE (Flagstaff International Relief Effort) is a non-profit organization (501c.3), NGO (non-government organization) based in Flagstaff, Arizona, with a branch office in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. FIRE began its work in the devastated post-Soviet economy of Mongolia in 1999 on the foundation of “placing aid directly in the hands of the people.” We continually evolve, meeting the challenges of a rapidly changing world. FIRE’s working relationships with all stakeholders — government and civil organizations and individuals — maximize efficiency and impact, creating replicable programs with innovative solutions. 

Between 1999 and 2009, FIRE’s basic aid and medical distribution program reached 15 of Mongolia’s 21 provinces with ten 40-foot sea containers of supplies and aid shipped from Flagstaff to Ulaanbaatar. 46 American volunteers went door-to-door, guided by local social workers, seeking out the neediest families. 76 tons of aid was personally delivered to 65,000 individuals. 23 volunteer medical professionals provided $720,000 of medical supplies to 348 clinics and 1,200 hours of training to 2,100 Mongolian healthcare workers. 80 computers and 6,000 English books were also delivered to one dozen schools.

In 2009, FIRE shifted its focus to sustainable, long-term public health programs, specifically liver health, through partnerships with the National Institutes of Health and Rotary International on hepatitis research and prevention. In 2016, FIRE was recognized by the World Health Organization and the European Association for the Study of the Liver as one of five “Innovative Hepatitis Screening Projects” worldwide. 

In 2017 FIRE’s screening work was featured in The Economist Intelligence Unit as an example of best practices for HCV screening initiatives. FIRE’s Executive Director was also named one of 18 Hepatitis C Change Makers and one of 6 Hepatitis C Change Maker Honorees by The Economist Intelligence Unit. FIRE’s Hepatitis Free Mongolia and specifically the Hepatitis Coordinator role pioneered by FIRE in rural Mongolia has been featured by the World Hepatitis Alliance several times since 2021.

Since 2017, FIRE has led Hepatitis Free Mongolia, currently in its second phase.  Phase 1 was the first project in Mongolia to provide comprehensive liver screenings at every clinic in an entire province. Phase 2’s goal is to eliminate hepatitis C completely in Sukhbaatar province by July 2023. Phase 3 is in development for Khovd Province.

“Mongolian Yurts | Gers” is a program of FIRE. We have been importing Mongolian yurts to the US from the same factory in Ulaanbaatar since 2005. All proceeds support FIRE’s office in Ulaanbaatar, expenses usually not covered by grant funds. This program not only supports our office in Mongolia, it also supports local craftsmen and women in Mongolia while sharing Mongolian culture with the world.  

Please visit FIRE’s website to learn more.