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Wallace Richard Rowat

Disaster Management -- Emergency Response Coordination -- Programme Management -- Relief and Development in Conflict Situations

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Photos - Disaster Management and Security Coordination

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Security Management - proper security management is the only way people can work safely in dangerous areas. The first step is a to establish an evacuation plan. I have used the evacuation plan in every location where I have worked - Cambodia, Thailand, Sudan, Afghanistan, Indonesia.

Evacuation of Battambang, Cambodia after Khmer Rouge attacks. Working in a civil war environment requires careful security coordination : where is the fighting today, what roads are mined and when, what to do under shelling or when caught in fighting. As one of three Emergency Response Coordinators for Battambang I shared responsibility for all aspects of security coordination for more than 30 NGOs working and living in the province. This included 24 hr radio monitoring, daily security assessment and briefings, a medical response team and creation / maintenance of a procedure manual.

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Evacuation of Feeding Centre in Leer, South Sudan. While doing logistics for one of MSF's feeding centres in South Sudan our team was air evac'ed at dawn. Our comprehensive security plan enabled us to withdraw in good order with all of our important equipment. Within 2 hours the compound was looted and the feeding centre was in flames.

Disaster Management and Emergency Response Coordination

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Depending on the type of disaster you can take significant steps to prepare for and thus reduce the impact of the disaster. In Ambon in Maluku, Indonesia we prepared for the man made disaster of fighting by pre-positioning needed supplies in strategic areas in anticipation of wounded and refugees. In this way we were able to respond immediately, often while the clashes were still in progress we were distributing needed medicines, setting up temporary shelter and water tanks.

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Assessment mission to Badghis province, Afghanistan. Assessments are an important part of disaster management. They must have specific information gathering goals, be carried out by qualified personnel and require increased security precautions.

Repatriation of Khmer refugees. The repatriation of 400,000 people was the end of a long term disaster, it was a major undertaking requiring planning, flexibility and the co-operation of all concerned. As part of the Repatriation Coordination Committee for Site B my responsibilities were to communicate repatriation information to the population of 45,000. This included an initial home visit to explain the process to each family and survey needs, followed by regular updates and the establishment of information offices.

Programme Management

Management team in Site II Khmer refugee camp in Thailand. During my time as Khmer Border Printing Coordinator I brought women on to the management teams and provided training to the extent that we went from 8 non-Khmer advisors to 2, while increasing production and enhancing self-respect.

Vocational Training

Fabricating Printing Press Parts in Site B. Vocational training was provided in all aspects of printing technology - desktop publishing, graphic arts, plate making, printing, binding as well as equipment maintenance.

Development / Counterpart Training


Training Room RCG Battambang, Cambodia. Development and capacity building are long term activities, not measured in months but years. RCG was a four year project from inception to completion.

Dental Project

Dental Project (1991 - 1996) : In association with Dr. Ken Morehouse, McGill University and the IOM arrange the donation, transportation and distribution of dental equipment (X-ray units (4), drill apparatus and hand instruments (1,500)) to implementing NGOs in the Khmer refugee camps in Thailand and to Battambang Provincial Hospital in Cambodia.

Cultural Sensitivity

Paying respect to Buddhist monks in Site II. Buddhism is an integral part of Khmer life. Whether a marriage, a birth or a new printing press their presence and blessings are welcome and necessary.

See Related Websites

Thai / Cambodian Border Refugee Camps

Ambon / Maluku Information Website


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