Ex- Humanitarian Centre volunteer returns from post-cyclone relief work
Louise Bloom, ex-Humanitarian Centre volunteer, discusses her experience of helping with ongoing relief operations in Myanmar, where people are still recovering from the devastation of cylone Nargis...
Cyclone Nargis hit Myanmar in May 2008, taking hundreds of thousands of lives and causing billions of pounds of damage. Louise Bloom, ex-Humanitarian Centre volunteer, returned in September 2009 from six months of helping the ongoing relief operations. Louise was working with Save the Children as a logistics intern.
Louise previously volunteered with Engineers Without Borders-UK (EWB-UK), and the Humanitarian Centre (HC) whilst she was studying in Cambridge. She also took some of the international development courses and training available at the HC.
The area Louise now specialises in is humanitarian logistics. In Myanmar, she was involved in the management of goods, information and other resources for relief projects. The humanitarian element of the work was definitive for Louise’s experience. She described the work as, “raw, because you can really feel the effect you are having on people’s lives”. This is something that distinguishes relief work as both desirable and challenging employment.
The field experience Louise gained in Myanmar was invaluable, and served to re-enforce both her skills and her desire to make a career within international relief and development. When asked what advice she would give to those looking for a career in this area Louise said, “the most important thing is to be proactive, research, and talk to people; so much of the sector relies on networking”.
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