Emergency Shelter Training.
Birmingham City Council has a group of officers that volunteer to respond 24/7 to provide emergency shelter and support for people who have been affected by an emergency such as a fire, flood etc. and need temporary shelter for a short time. These officers work across a range of different Council Departments.
Members of the Rapid Response Team and some Rest Centre Managers came together on 24th May 2012 at the British Red Cross Headquarters in Camp Hill to increase and refresh knowledge about Birmingham City Council’s emergency shelter arrangements. The session also offered an opportunity to meet some new colleagues such as Mezba Haider (pictured below) from Brasshouse Translation & Interpreting Services, who was recruited for his language skills and experience of coordinating interpreters in over 60 languages.
The group discussed how they would cope with the many demands that may arise during different emergency scenarios. Hazel Broadhouse (also pictured) said “These events are not only great for our learning, but also help us with team building. A strong team spirit and a common sense of purpose is imperative when working together in what are often exceptionally challenging circumstances”. This builds on Exercise Birmingham Shield that was held in the City Centre in October.
Saika Bibi (also pictured) is a neighbourhood advisor and has been working with the team since the infamous tornado in 2005, she brings her own knowledge and skills with the community to the mix and has been more recently involved in staffing a rest centre following a gas explosion in Handsworth.
Birmingham City Council works closely with statutory and voluntary sector partners such as the British Red Cross during emergencies and this session was faciliated jointly by Dr Adrian Powney from the British Red Cross , Veronica Coleman, Principal Emergency Planning Officer and David Aston, Assistant Emergency Planning Officer from the Birmingham Resilience Team.
Another successful and enjoyable training session.
Saika Bibi, Hazel Broadhouse, Mezba Haider