Hosted at the Victorian Emergency Management Institute in Mt Macedon, Victoria on Friday 24 July, this year’s event gathered participants from RedR Australia’s engineering partners to take on the annual training challenge.
Held for the third time since 2018, the Corporate Humanitarian Challenge is designed to give RedR Australia’s partners a taste of the internationally recognised training which prepares technical specialists for everyday life responding to a humanitarian emergency.
RedR Australia’s expert trainers guided participants through a range of practical activities using tools and materials likely to be used when preparing for, responding to and recovering from a disaster, building their humanitarian skills.
The training reflects real-life scenarios faced by humanitarian workers to prepare corporate professionals for the type of problem solving and leadership skills needed on the ground in a crisis.
As part of the one-day event, participants were challenged to work as a team to create shelters and tents using raw materials.
Participants joined from Arup Australasia, GHD, Tonkin and Memetic Consulting to challenge themselves and each other in a range of hands-on experiences.
Participants learned how to apply their engineering and corporate skills in a humanitarian response.
Tonkin CEO Gerry Doyle said his nine staff who travelled from Adelaide were impressed by the quality of the training content.
“We all went in not fully knowing what to expect and found ourselves in a mock humanitarian crisis!” Mr Doyle said. “It was a very hands-on, fun and challenging day. It was incredibly well run by the RedR team and was good to see everyone in attendance fully embrace the experience.”
Memetic Consulting’s Greg Skinner said his learnings from the challenge would benefit his work with clients.
“It was a smashing experience,” Mr Skinner said. “I learnt a great deal about humanitarian work and how it differs from other charity work.”
“I’m quite independent as a consultant but my key takeaway from the experience was that teams can come together when they have a problem to fix.”
For many participants, the skills learned in this unique training will refine their understanding of on-the-ground experiences for humanitarians. For others, it may be the first step towards becoming a humanitarian worker.