TİKA's training programs in Bosnia prove invaluable in Turkish quake rescue efforts
Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency's (TİKA) comprehensive training in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2017 contributed significantly to the activities of the teams from Bosnia and Herzegovina who went to Türkiye to participate in search and rescue operations in the earthquakes that occurred on February 6. About 30 people who participated in the training in Bosnia and Herzegovina, put what they learned into practice during search and rescue activities in the earthquake zone. Three members of the Bosnian team who participated in the training given by Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) and Human Rights and Freedoms (IHH) Foundation experts and contributed to the earthquake zone through this training told AA correspondent through TİKA.
Pamela Bejdic, who serves in the Search and Rescue Unit of the Novi Grad Municipality in the capital Sarajevo, stated that she completed the tough training on Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) last year, and said, "The training I received was extremely useful in the field. Thanks to these training sessions, we managed to save 10 people from the wreckage." Bejdic, who said that one of the biggest reasons for being among the teams going to Türkiye was the training they received, stated that she applied a lot of the information she learned in theory in practice.
Semra Japalak, who was also on the same team, emphasized that the training contributed greatly to the work in the earthquake zone, and said, "The training we received also helped us in terms of how to approach people who were waiting for their loved ones to be rescued from the wreckage. We knew how to listen to them and how to calm them down." Japalak, who witnessed that IHH worked in a highly coordinated way in the region, stated that "Organizing is important for every job, but the earthquake zone we were in was a place open to unexpected situations. It was an area where stressful and complex emotions were dominant. At this point, I was amazed by the leadership skills of the officials."
Benjamin Poturak, another member of the team, explained that he participated in search and rescue training in difficult-to-reach areas and wreckage thanks to TİKA, and said, "The training I received through TİKA has been a great advantage in my professional life." Poturak, who underlined that the training he received also made a great contribution to the earthquake zone, said that working side by side with the experts who gave them the training was a separate pride for them.
In total, 200 people participated in TİKA's training sessions in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Among the 234-member team from Bosnia and Herzegovina who participated in search and rescue operations in Türkiye, 30 people participated in the search and rescue training given by AFAD and IHH experts in cooperation with TİKA.