Untrained on the frontline: The importance of predeployment training for aid workers and volunteers

Italian Red Cross volunteers and staff respond to migrants' basic needs and offer psychosocial support upon arrival in Italy. Photo by: Italian Red Cross / CC BY-NC-ND

BASEL — Using the light on his phone as a torch, James worked into the early evening to reconnect the water supply to a refugee housing unit on a long-term camp in Greece. It was well past curfew and unsafe for him to be on camp. He was not supposed to fix the plumbing for individual units in any case. But that night, none of that mattered to him; people needed his help. That is why he volunteered in the first place, after all.

But, he could have put himself and the family he wanted to help in danger.

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About the author

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    Lucy Spencer

    Lucy Spencer is a freelance writer whose focus areas include technology, international development, and politics. You can read more of her work here: https://naturally-inquisitive.com/