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In a planning mode

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Panama City, February 2020

While still recovering physically and emotionally from my last trip, I am busy wrapping on recent missions to Ecuador, Bolivia, Brazil and indeed Argentina. Writing reports, reflecting on the situation, and more importantly, talking with colleagues on how we need to adjust our projects to have the best impact on people finding themselves in various humanitarian stresses. As usual, it is easier to design a project that has a quick impact (which is important), but it is much more challenging to working out how to ensure that the potential positive change that the project generates, lasts in the future, or in other words, that the change is sustainable. The trick is that we cannot and should not do it on our own. Communities, governments, private companies, NGOs, international community organisations all need to be taken into consideration in the puzzle. This is difficult to crack, as you can imagine for a various of reasons… practical, technical, and also moral. Even if there is a consensus that humanitarian crises need to be dealt with, it is less obvious how to do it and who should be in a driving force for the change… It is both interesting and frustrating in the same time.

I am also getting ready to travel to Cartagena in Colombia, where I will be presenting to EU ambassadors, EU partners from various countries in Latin America on our work when it comes to response to disasters (with a focus on civil protection work). The conference is in the middle of March, so there is not a lot of time to get ready.

Then Easter is coming, and so is a trip to Poland. I have already booked my tickets and I am very excited to be going home to visit Mum, family and friends!