“The training gave me deeper insight into Logistics Cluster tasks and responsibilities”

A sneak peek into our IM training from participant Annette Schmelzeisen
09 April 2019
Logistics Cluster IM training 2019 - icebreaker exercise

The fourth Logistics Cluster Information Management Training was held by the Global Logistics Cluster 19-22 March at WFP headquarters in Rome. 29 participants from 14 organisations, including NGOs and UN agencies, were invited to learn more about the tasks of an IM officer and the Global Logistics Cluster.

The intense training was set around a fictitious emergency scenario, which places participants at the heart of the response, taking up the roles of IM Officers and tasked with providing humanitarian partners with timely and reliable information, and effective coordination.

As the scenario progressed we learned how to produce the various IM products, and to deal with the challenges field IM officers face.

The practical sessions alternated with teaching sessions on a variety of different topics spanning Logistics Cluster functions and activities including: the cluster system, OCHA’s role in emergency response, Logistics Cluster preparedness, as well as support tools and other helpful information sources such as GIS.

Before the training I had only little knowledge about the Logistics Cluster. The training gave me deeper insight into the Logistics Cluster’s tasks and responsibilities in humanitarian response and the services they can facilitate to partners, including NGOs like Johanniter.

A challenge for participants and facilitators alike was to balance the training tasks with real-time operations, after Tropical Cyclone Idai made landfall. As we were drafting Situation Updates for our fictitious mission, the IM team in HQ were sitting only a few meters away providing partners with real situation updates of Mozambique. Several participants also used the breaks to check back in with work colleagues on what can be done, and how we can help as part of our own organisation’s response.

 

 

Many of the things I learned during the training I can now put into practice in Johanniter’s mission to help those impacted by the Cyclone. What’s more, I can also share helpful Logistics Cluster IM products with my colleagues such as Access Constraint Maps and Situation Updates to help with response planning.

One of the loveliest aspects of the training was to meet so many people from all over the humanitarian community and share experiences. Hats off and thank you to all the facilitators providing such a well-prepared training under these special circumstances. And thank you to all participants, it was a pleasure getting to know you.