Donations can cause unintended pressure
Donations of Emergency Services equipment to the Global South come from all types of sources and comprise a selection of brands of apparatus. Donating entities acquire no matter they will and bundle items into shipments that ideally fit the wants of the recipient. But the considerably haphazard donations process can end up creating added strain on the Global South recipient departments. After all, it is hard enough maintaining a standardized stock of equipment. But think about now having a mix of tools, each with slightly totally different characteristics and attributes – gear, instruments and vehicles with completely different manuals when you have them, totally different spare components if you need them, specialist technical support if somehow you will get access to it locally, and sometimes directions that are not within the local language of recipient firefighters.
Moreover, I even have seen donated gear arrive in recipient international locations that’s clearly marked as out of service (OOS), unserviceable (U/S), unrepairable, failed and even ‘unsafe–do not use’. Also frequent is damaged or incomplete tools; PPE that is torn, still dirty with blood, or with out thermal liners; cracked helmets with no face shields or internal shell; SCBA masks with no harnesses or exhalation valves; seized pumps; and, the most typical of all, punctured fireplace hose.
Donations sometimes include written disclaimers from some Global North organizations, absolving them from any warranty, guarantee and responsibility for accident, damage or mechanical failure after delivery. But authorized legal responsibility is hardly the biggest concern of a recipient department looking to defend its personnel. Clear fit-for-duty situations ought to at all times be met by a donation to make sure it serves its intended function.
Lastly, many donors count on the host country or recipient division to cowl some prices – delivery, import duties and flights for volunteers providing coaching and attending the handover. And while there are เกจวัดแรงดันน้ำ for cost-sharing (including that it encourages accountability on the a part of the recipient), these prices could be substantial for recipients who in plenty of cases can’t afford fundamental, new belongings. These prices put important pressure on the recipient departments and can outcome in donations being caught in warehouses for months or years whereas recipients wait for somebody to pay taxes and charges to get the gear ‘released’ for use.
Are we encouraging risk?
I have seen many types of gear that require common, specialist care and statutory control that have arrived within the arms of overseas personnel having failed or exceeded the permissible standards anticipated within the nation of origin. Used ladders, hoses, pumps, chemical protection fits, medical provides, radiation and gas-monitoring devices, traces, lifejackets, vertical rescue equipment, etc. all cascade their means down to international locations the place they are used and trusted by these with less regulatory protection. Firefighters within the Global South are no much less courageous than their counterparts in richer countries. The gear they use should still be protected.
It considerations me – and I actually have seen this in the field – that some sorts of refined donated tools typically encourage firefighters to tackle emergencies that they don’t have any coaching or ability to handle. In many circumstances, they expose themselves to far higher risk, as they’ve neither the expertise nor the training opportunities that Global North responders have.
Responders in rising markets don’t have the luxurious of calling the native power or gasoline company to isolate the supply to a property before they enter. They might face stored home gasoline bottles, unauthorized electrical energy connections, illegal constructing requirements, and other hazards that make their operations particularly precarious. But armed with their newly donated equipment, they generally assume that they’re better protected to enter those risks than earlier than, when they had nothing.
Ask your self should you would honestly be okay with utilizing donated gear that has failed certification or handed its usable date in your personal daily emergencies, let alone under these circumstances?
Some donor businesses that ship their personnel to offer short-term, basic training issue their very own ‘certificates of attendance and/or competence’. But attendance is not the identical as mastery. A firefighter receiving a donation is unlikely to ask if the overseas skilled is really certified to show them a few specific piece of equipment. Unless certifications are endorsed or acknowledged by a real requirements agency in the host nation and the instructors have current qualifications and legal authority to problem them outside their very own nation, the apply is questionable.
In some ways, professional guidance is much more important than the donated gear itself. If we need to prevent donation-driven threat taking by Global South first responders, we want to not solely donate tools that’s fit for obligation but also help our donations with qualified individuals on the bottom, working hand in hand with the local personnel for an applicable time period to accurately information and certify customers in operations and maintenance.
Donations should drive budget
Finally, donations don’t automatically treatment the equipment and coaching void in rising markets, and in some cases, they’ll really exacerbate the issue. Global South firefighters asking for overseas assist are doing so as a outcome of their native authorities both lack the required funds or don’t see their wants as a precedence. But the truth is that in lots of nations’ governments, officers typically have little understanding of the business. They assume that donated used items are a useful answer to a finances shortfall. A short-term fix maybe. But in the long run, the aim must be to encourage governments to handle the actual short- and long-term needs of their Emergency Services personnel and really invest in the event of quality Emergency Services for his or her nations. A fast repair may take the strain off briefly, but the necessary discussion about long-term financing between departments and their governments must be happening sooner, not later.
In the end, there is not a shortcutting high quality. Donations have to be quality tools, licensed to be used and ideally, the place potential, the same or comparable brands as these getting used at present by recipients. Equipment wants to come with actual coaching from practitioners with current experience on the gear being acquired. Recipients have to be trained so the new equipment could make them safer, not create additional danger. And donations shouldn’t end a dialog about budget – they should be part of a dialog about greater requirements and higher service that relies on quite a lot of new, recycled and donated equipment that actually serves the ever-expanding wants of the worldwide Emergency Services community.
Please maintain a watch out for the fourth and last instalment of this article subsequent month, the place I will illustrate factors to think about when making a donation, as well as recommendations to ensure successful donations you’ll find a way to feel proud of.
Chris Gannon
Chris Gannon has spent 29 years within the business as a national Fire Chief, government advisor, CEO of Gannon Emergency Solutions, and has constructed a status as a pioneer in reviewing and bettering Emergency Services all over the world. For extra data, please visit or
GESA (Global Emergency Services Action)
GESA is a global non-profit founded in 2020 by chief corporations in the Emergency Services sector. GESA is a coalition of firms, consultants and practitioners working collectively to vary the future of the worldwide Emergency Services market. We are at present creating our flagship platform – the GESA Equipment Exchange – a web-based software that can connect Global South departments with producers, consultants, trainers and suppliers to tie donations to a sustainable, longer-term pipeline of gross sales and repair. For more information, membership inquiries and extra, please contact