Call for applications for the 2013 Canadian Disaster and Humanitarian Training Program

By Gregory Silverman | 03 Mar, 2013

Course Objectives:
The 2013 Canadian Disaster and Humanitarian Response Training Program will provide interest- ed medical students, residents, public health students, other graduate-level students with relevant backgrounds, mid-career professionals and humanitarian workers with the globally-recognized competencies relevant to humanitarian work. The program will include both in-classroom learning as well as participation in a 3-day Field Simulation at the Koffler Scientific Reserve. Content for this program will be informed by expert practitioners and organizations working in the field.

Course Participants will gain:
- Competency-based essentials in humanitarian response practice recognized by NGOs, Canadian universities and government as the standard for professional-level humanitarian training
- Solid foundation to build a career in international humanitarian research and/or practice
- Opportunity to become part of the humanitarian sector community

The Simulation Exercise part of the program is designed to simulate a complex humanitarian emer- gency that involves understanding cultural context, war, natural disaster and forced migration of the local population in addition to other challenges injected to add stress to the participants. Par- ticipants are in the simulation for 72 hours, working in multidisciplinary teams to perform a series of assessments on the fictional populations. Teams must find ways to solve dynamic and complicat- ed problems including security incidents, disease outbreaks, child soldiers, environmental shocks, limited resources, supply issues and populations on the move. Participants apply their skills in all areas specific to humanitarian response including: health, water and sanitation, food, shelter and protection. They also use principles of triage and of humanitarian action, coordinate the emergency, run meetings, apply globally-recognized standards to meet shelter, water, sanitation and nutritional needs, enumerate populations and calculate important health indicators that translate into numbers needed to treat and the dollars needed to do so. They draw on knowledge in international human- itarian law, negotiation, population sampling, information management, and crisis mapping along with other technologies specifically used in humanitarian emergencies. Teams establish their own compound, eat military rations, draft situation reports and evacuation plans, respond to militia strikes and kidnapping, practice landmine safety and provide media interviews on camera. At the end of the simulation teams submit and present a final proposal for their intended project to assist the affected population to the UN and other donors. Individual performance is assessed using an CCHT-created competency-based evaluation tool.