Recent map addition 9 April, 2017
GPS use and mapping in humanitarian applications

About MapToGround

The agencies – UNOSAT, WFP Logistics Cluster, WFP Map Centre, ZKI, and MapAction – provide maps for humanitarian aid.  Each particular map is presented as a PDF, JPG or PNG file depending on agency and circumstance.

MapToGround selects agency maps that are useful for handheld GPS device operations and that include sufficient data for georeferencing.  For each of these maps MapToGround provides a JPG file (or, when applicable, a link to the agency JPG or PNG file), a georeferenced OziExplorer MAP file and a georeferenced KMZ file.

Maps on the MapToGround site are paged by country (not by operation) and are ordered within the country page by the agency production date, most recent at the top.

If there is a map at UNOSAT, WFP Logistics Cluster, WPF Map Centre ZKI, or MapAction that you could use in another format then contact MapToGround with the filename and the name of your organization and MapToGround will (in all probability) provide applicable files.

Resource material on this site includes pages on GPS/GNSS and map basics, an introduction to OziExplorer and a discussion of the use of KMZ and GPX files with Google Earth and handheld GPS devices.  There is also a design toolbox which contains some elementary tools for refugee camp design and a links page directed to mapping and humanitarian resources.

Recent maps

08 April 2017 South Sudan – Nahr Yei district, Central Equatoria, satellite-detected damage density. (UNOSAT)
07 April 2017 Colombia – Mocoa, Municipality of Mocoa, Department of Putumayo. Dwellings affected by recent landslide. (UNOSAT)
07 April 2017 Colombia – Mocoa, Municipality of Mocoa, Department of Putumayo. Satellite detected potential mudflow. (UNOSAT)
30 March 2017 Namibia – Oponono Lake, Oshana region, satellite detected waters. (UNOSAT)
09 March 2017 Madagascar – Analanjirofo Region, Maroantsetra, satellite detected waters. (UNOSAT)
06 March 2017 Syria – Hadalat Border Crossing, IDP shelters, Jordan-Syria border. (UNOSAT)
Site Directory

Country Pages
Afghanistan Δ
Algeria Δ
Bangladesh Δ
Cambodia Δ
Cameroon Δ
C'tral African Republic Δ
Chad Δ
Colombia Δ
Congo Δ
Cuba Δ
Dominican Republic Δ
D. R. Congo Δ
Ecuador Δ
Ethiopia Δ
Fiji Δ
Gaza and West Bank Δ
Georgia Δ
Guinea Δ
Haiti Δ
Iraq Δ
Jamaica Δ
Kenya Δ
Lebanon Δ
Lesotho Δ
Liberia Δ
Libya Δ
Madagascar Δ
Malawi Δ
Mali Δ
Mauritania Δ
Mozambique Δ
Namibia Δ
Nepal Δ
Niger Δ
Nigeria Δ
Pakistan Δ
Papua New Guinea Δ
Philippines Δ
Senegal Δ
Sierra Leone Δ
Somalia Δ
South Sudan
Sri Lanka
Sudan Δ
Swaziland Δ
Syria Δ
Tajikistan Δ
Thailand Δ
Turkey Δ
Uganda Δ
Ukraine Δ
Viet Nam Δ
Yemen Δ
Zimbabwe Δ
Δ indicates availability of WFP Logistics Cluster General Logistics Planning Map.

Resource Pages
Design Toolbox
KMZ and GPX Files
Mapping and GPS
About OziExplorer
Links to humanitarian organizations, map sources, map and GPS software, map related information and tools
Camp design calculator, density, water supply, sanitation, health, diesel fuel consumption, electricity distribution
KMZ, KML and GPX files, KMZ and GPX files on handheld devices, KMZ and GPX files and GPS data on Google Earth
GPS basics, coordinate systems, datum basics, scale
OziExplorer in the field, system requirement, MapToGround resources, file types, documenting data
    Map presentation – details of how maps are presented on this site
(A) Map title and production date from the agency map sheet.
(B) Link to appropriate reference within the agency that the map was sourced from.
(C) Extract from map image at 'natural size' or 100%.
(D) The rectangular size of the area covered by the map.
(E) The scale indicator is valid for the map extract, and if the MapToGround web page and the map image are displayed at the same zoom level it will also be valid for the map image.
(F) Any MapToGround comments will appear here.  In this case there is an alert to the large scale of the map, the camp area has been calculated using OziExplorer and there is a link to a relevant smaller scale map.
(G) The KMZ file will load into some Garmin GPS units.  It will also display in Google Earth.  Further information at KMZ and GPX files resources.
(H) These two files are required for OziExplorer use.  Further information at OziExplorer files resources.
    Map Source – UNOSAT

UNOSAT is the UN Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) Operational Satellite Applications Program implemented in co-operation with the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN).  The program delivers satellite solutions to relief and development organisations to assist communities exposed to poverty, hazards and risk, or affected by crisis.

UNOSAT has given permission for the use of its maps on this site.  UNOSAT requests that users credit UNOSAT and/or the original source if UNOSAT information is used in a formal document.

    Map Source – WFP Logistics Cluster

The Logistics Cluster is a UN cluster led by the World Food Programme, WFP.  It provides logistical resource tools to the humanitarian community during emergency operations through the acquisition, compilation and dissemination of timely and accurate geographic information.

The maps produced by Logistics Cluster are often small scale maps.  Some of these maps do not offer utility for handheld GPS units and are not processed by MapToGround.  Nevertheless if there is a map at the Logistics Cluster map centre that you could use, contact MapToGround with the Logistics Cluster filename and the name of your aid agency and MapToGround will (in all probability) provide applicable files.

The Logistics Cluster has given permission for the use of its maps on this site.

    Map Source – WFP Map Centre

The WFP Map Centre provides time-sensitive geographic information useful for aid professionals, including rainfall, flooding, transport links, earthquake effects and storm damage.

The maps presented by the WFP Map Centre are often small scale maps.  Some of these maps do not offer utility for handheld GPS units and are not processed by MapToGround.  Nevertheless if there is a map at the WFP Map Centre that you could use, contact MapToGround with the WFP Map Centre filename and the name of your aid agency and MapToGround will (in all probability) provide applicable files.

    Map Source – MapAction

MapAction is an NGO that deploys trained and equipped humanitarian mapping and information teams to disaster areas.  The teams collect data from sources in the field which are collated, analysed and mapped.  MapAction's range of maps is extensive and the maps generally target operational issues such as logistics and population movement, however, the organization also produces topographical maps.

    Map Source – ZKI

The Centre for Satellite Based Crisis Information, ZKI, is a service of the German Remote Sensing Data Centre.  It processes and analyses satellite imagery during natural and environmental disasters, targeted humanitarian relief activities and civil security issues.  The resulting satellite based information products are available on the ZKI web site.  These products include maps, GIS-ready geodata and dossiers.

MapToGround does not reproduce (in any format other than small extracts) the material available on the ZKI web site.  MapToGround provides (for some ZKI maps) georeferenced MAP files to enable ready GPS interaction using OziExplorer software.


The material on this site was generated using data from UNOSAT, ZKI, WFP and MapAction.  The process also used software from OziExplorer and Mapwel.  No commitments have been given by UNOSAT, ZKI, WFP, MapAction, OziExplorer or Mapwel that their respective products are suitable for this application.  In addition, the respective conditions and disclaimers advanced with each organization's products are applicable.  The material provided by MapToGround itself may contain errors as it is not feasible to field test the data and MapToGround gives no commitment to its validity.

Updated: 9 April, 2017       MapToGround introduced July 2010.       site management