Relief for humanitarian workers in Afghanistan

Humanitarian workers in Afghanistan suffer from extreme amounts of stress. They are responding to humanitarian emergency situations and working with people in distress. At the same time, working with western humanitarian organisations, they are a target of insurgents throughout the country and at risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks.

WarTrauma supported a group of twenty humanitarian staff working in the joint response of the Dutch Relief Alliance through a five day training. The training was tailor made for the staff of Terre des Hommes to become master trainers who can train small groups of humanitarian staff elsewhere in the country.

Creating mutual support works best in groups with colleagues who work together on a daily basis. Such sessions will stimulate a better understanding of the different needs one’s co-workers can have in difficult circumstances. Awareness is an important part of natural resilience.

Due to the security situation in Afghanistan it is unsafe to organize large gatherings in many cities. Training local master trainers is therefore the most effective method to ensure a quick dissemination of basic skills and knowledge and important for sustainability.

During the sessions staff of other international organisations such as Cordaid, International Rescue Committee, Oxfam, Save the Children, WarChild, World Vision and ZOA, also participated. The master trainers of Terre des Hommes will lead the trainings for their organisations, which is a good example of the joint work under the Dutch Relief Alliance.