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First things first: Do No Harm

12 November 2012

First things first: Do No Harm

Held in Peshawar, the course provided 21 aid workers with an opportunity to learn how to assist communities living in conflict areas, and how to make sure humanitarian work is not used to further political or military agendas.

The training is crucial for relief workers operating around Peshawar’s northern hub, close to Jalozai refugee camp, one of the largest in Pakistan. In recent months, Jalozai has seen an influx of tens of thousands of people fleeing armed conflict in the Khyber Agency, which borders Afghanistan.

“Routinely we are working in emergency situations with internally displaced persons”, said Rahatullah, a training participant and NGO programme manager. "And we risk harming people, because we are providing help in a hurry, but only to 50 per cent of the population.”

Another trainee said the Do No Harm course had helped him to identify “divisions and sources of tension” in a land irrigation scheme he is running in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Photo: Boys helping to steer a mule-drawn cart loaded with supplies in Peshawar, Pakistan. © RedR/Usman Ghani

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