Wrong suppositions and exceeded expectations

Impressions from the humedica training for future field staff members in June 2014

by Jari Trabert/JEI,  2014/06/23

On-site operations in disaster areas must be learned and trained. Because it is not only the physical strain and the lack of sleep which turn out to be energy-sapping. Also the team spirit is an important factor, which is decisive for the success or the failure of an operation.

Thus on June 1st, 32 motivated aspirants met in front of the humedica headquarters. Their only indication for the following week has been, amongst others, a packing note, which the candidates had interpreted in different ways. Media coordinator-to-be, Jari Trabert, reports about his impressions of the training:

“Jungle camp in Kaufbeuren with cockroach showers and desserts made of certain animal parts? And this without any alcohol? Or at least a survival camp including hardcore camping under hardest environmental conditions?

Such or similar ideas have certainly also come to other participants of the humedica training for future field staff members. But instead of a voyeuristic nonsense event or an adventure holiday, an intensive introduction to what, in my opinion, constitutes humanitarian aid awaited us: Living and working in a group in exceptional circumstances.

Nearly non-stop input, combined with a strictly timed schedule, full of the most various tasks, the configuration and operation of a team of strangers.

In addition to that, the difficulty to recognize the needs of the others, a 24-hours-availability with the threat of night evacuation, a stowaway in the staff vehicle and especially mean checkpoint guards: all these things gave us a hard time. As a single person or in the group, during the training or in everyday life – I am sure that every single one of us has been confronted to a situation which he wouldn’t have expected or which he had to grapple with.

And even if it is clear to everyone that it is impossible to cope with something if you do not train, this direct confrontation has been quite hard. Hard but also necessary, to put oneself in the situation of humanitarian aid and to start understanding if you want to expose yourself to it or not.

And even if there have been difficulties, I want to underline that the time and the work with the other participants and trainers has made me aware of many things and I enjoyed it very much. It was good to see, that we didn’t only listen to each other but that we also applied what we had heard.

I have been also pleased about the team spirit, which acted also across the individual teams: when it was necessary, there was always a support, sometimes even without any communication – as if it was understood.

Moreover, unexpected talents have been discovered: surprisingly professional theatre performances, enormous ornithological knowledge or wonderful artistic outpours when tackling the tasks. All this and even more have been things which enthused me.

Finally, I want to note something: No matter if we will go or not on an on-site operation one day, I am sure that for every single one this week has been extremely precious! And we have all contributed to it. Therefor I want, once again, to cordially thank all participants and trainers for any help given!”

Do you also want to support us and our teams in an emergency? humedica lives thanks to voluntary field staff as well as thanks to directed donations. By giving donations for the travel funds, you can contribute to transporting the medical teams safely to their places of operation and back home. We are fast, we have no wings though.

      humedica e.V.
      keyword travel funds
      account nb. 47 47
      bank code 734 500 00
      bank Sparkasse Kaufbeuren

With your donation you help us to help people in need. Thank you very much!

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