Donations – An Essential Guide, Part 3

Donations may cause unintended pressure

Donations of Emergency Services gear to the Global South come from every kind of sources and contain a variety of brands of equipment. Donating entities collect whatever they’ll and bundle items into shipments that ideally match the wants of the recipient. But the considerably haphazard donations process can find yourself creating added strain on the Global South recipient departments. After all, it is onerous sufficient maintaining a standardized stock of kit. But think about now having a combine of tools, each with slightly totally different traits and attributes – gear, tools and autos with totally different manuals when you have them, completely different spare elements if you want them, specialist technical assist if one method or the other you may get entry to it regionally, and infrequently instructions that are not in the native language of recipient firefighters.
Moreover, I actually have seen donated gear arrive in recipient international locations that is clearly marked as out of service (OOS), unserviceable (U/S), unrepairable, failed and even ‘unsafe–do not use’. Also common is damaged or incomplete tools; PPE that’s torn, nonetheless soiled 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 commonest of all, punctured fire hose.
Donations typically come with written disclaimers from some Global North organizations, absolving them from any warranty, guarantee and responsibility for accident, injury or mechanical failure after delivery. But authorized liability is hardly the largest concern of a recipient division trying to shield its personnel. Clear fit-for-duty situations should always be met by a donation to ensure it serves its intended function.
Lastly, many donors expect the host nation or recipient division to cover some prices – transport, import duties and flights for volunteers providing coaching and attending the handover. And while there are good arguments for cost-sharing (including that it encourages accountability on the a part of the recipient), these costs may be substantial for recipients who in many cases can’t afford fundamental, new property. These prices put vital pressure on the recipient departments and can outcome in donations being caught in warehouses for months or years while recipients wait for someone to pay taxes and costs to get the equipment ‘released’ to be used.
Are we encouraging risk?

I truly have seen many types of equipment that require regular, specialist care and statutory control that have arrived in the arms of abroad personnel having failed or exceeded the permissible standards expected in the country of origin. Used ladders, hoses, pumps, chemical protection fits, medical provides, radiation and gas-monitoring units, traces, lifejackets, vertical rescue equipment, etc. all cascade their method down to countries where they are used and trusted by those with less regulatory protection. Firefighters within the Global South are no much less brave than their counterparts in richer countries. The gear they use must nonetheless be safe.
It issues me – and I even have seen this in the area – that some sorts of subtle donated gear often encourage firefighters to sort out emergencies that they don’t have any training or capability to handle. In many circumstances, they expose themselves to far larger danger, as they’ve neither the expertise nor the coaching alternatives that Global North responders have.
Responders in emerging markets don’t have the luxurious of calling the native power or fuel firm to isolate the provision to a property before they enter. They might face saved domestic gas bottles, unauthorized electricity connections, unlawful constructing standards, and other hazards that make their operations especially precarious. But armed with their newly donated gear, they often assume that they’re better protected to enter these risks than before, after they had nothing.
Ask pressure gauge octa if you would truthfully be okay with using donated gear that has failed certification or passed its usable date in your personal every day emergencies, not to mention beneath these circumstances?

Some donor companies that send their personnel to give short-term, primary training concern their own ‘certificates of attendance and/or competence’. But attendance is not the same as mastery. A firefighter receiving a donation is unlikely to ask if the foreign skilled is really qualified to show them a few explicit piece of apparatus. Unless certifications are endorsed or recognized by a real standards company within the host country and the instructors have current qualifications and authorized authority to concern them exterior their own nation, the follow is questionable.
In some ways, professional steerage is much more essential than the donated gear itself. If we wish to prevent donation-driven danger taking by Global South first responders, we want to not only donate equipment that is fit for obligation but in addition assist our donations with certified individuals on the ground, working hand in hand with the local personnel for an applicable time period to accurately guide and certify customers in operations and maintenance.
Donations ought to drive finances

Finally, donations do not automatically remedy the gear and training void in rising markets, and in some circumstances, they can truly exacerbate the problem. Global South firefighters asking for international 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 reality is that in many nations’ governments, officers usually have little understanding of the business. They assume that donated used objects are a handy resolution to a price range shortfall. A short-term fix perhaps. But in the lengthy run, the aim have to be to motivate governments to address the actual short- and long-term wants of their Emergency Services personnel and truly invest in the event of high quality Emergency Services for their nations. A quick repair may take the stress off temporarily, but the essential discussion about long-term financing between departments and their governments must be taking place sooner, not later.
In the end, there is no shortcutting high quality. Donations must be quality gear, certified to be used and ideally, the place possible, the identical or similar manufacturers as those getting used at present by recipients. Equipment wants to come with real coaching from practitioners with current experience on the gear being received. ไดอะแฟรม ซีล must be educated so the brand new tools could make them safer, not create additional danger. And donations should not finish a dialog about budget – they should be a half of a dialog about larger requirements and better service that relies on a selection of new, recycled and donated gear that really serves the ever-expanding needs of the worldwide Emergency Services group.
Please keep an eye fixed out for the fourth and final instalment of this text next month, the place I will illustrate elements to assume about when making a donation, in addition to suggestions to ensure profitable donations you’ll find a way to feel happy with.
Chris Gannon

Chris Gannon has spent 29 years in the industry as a nationwide Fire Chief, government advisor, CEO of Gannon Emergency Solutions, and has built a reputation as a pioneer in reviewing and improving Emergency Services around the world. For more info, please go to or
GESA (Global Emergency Services Action)

GESA is a world non-profit based in 2020 by leader firms in the Emergency Services sector. GESA is a coalition of corporations, consultants and practitioners working together to change the way forward for the worldwide Emergency Services market. We are presently developing our flagship platform – the GESA Equipment Exchange – a web-based tool that will join Global South departments with manufacturers, consultants, trainers and suppliers to tie donations to a sustainable, longer-term pipeline of gross sales and repair. For more data, membership inquiries and extra, please contact


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