The Value of Support for Aid Workers in Complex Emergencies

Jan 14, 2020

Background: More disasters worldwide are now classified as complex emergencies, thereby increasing the threat to life and limb and potentially increasing the psychosocial impact of the experience for aid workers.
Objective: This study examines the concept of support as perceived by aid workers who had recent experience in complex emergencies.
Method: Using a phenomenological approach, 6 professional aid workers were interviewed about their experience.
Results: Aid workers who work in complex emergencies do not feel supported at the predeployment, during deployment, and after
deployment phases. Failure to provide this support may cause disappointment, reduced self-worth, anger with the organization, and feeling of lack of achievement regarding self and the mission.
Conclusion: While the study may be limited by the volunteer sample and potential bias in data collection, the findings reiterate a roverbial but important issue in relation to aid relief staff in complex emergencies.

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