Oct 2011


Disaster relief volunteer leader training program

Towards the future

It has been seven months since the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami occurred, and the situation in the disaster affected area has gone through many changes during this time. Peace Boat will continue our relief efforts in the Ishinomaki area while learning from the disaster so as to minimize the amount of damage suffered in the event of another disaster in the future.

The Peace Boat Disaster Relief Volunteer Center will commence running the “Disaster Relief Volunteer Leader Training Program,” a human resource development and capacity building program aimed at disaster relief volunteers in Ishinomaki.

Significant damage to the Kii Pensinsula was caused by Typhoon No. 12 in early September. Since then, volunteers who already had experience in Ishinomaki have been assigned to work on-site in the areas affected by the typhoon. Creating a society that is prepared for any future disasters such as the predicted Tokai/Tōnankai earthquake, and is made up of people willing to cross borders in order to help people in other countries in the event of a natural disaster, is what we can do to make sure that the people whose lives were sacrificed in the disaster did not lose their lives in vain.

The reason for the delay in placing volunteers in the area after the March disaster was because of a lack of experienced volunteer team leaders who would be able to work together with volunteers in the area. This is the primary reason the Peace Boat Disaster Relief Volunteer Center decided it was necessary to train volunteer team leaders as soon as possible. The Disaster Relief Volunteer Leader Training Program will commence in November.

A Human Resource Development Program to Train Volunteer Team Leaders about On-site Volunteer Coordination

In order to conduct systematic volunteer relief efforts, it is necessary to be able to monitor the situation. Conducting emergency and relief activities in a safe, functional and efficient manner is essential because of the high turnover of volunteers. In order to be able to do this, it is important for there to be people all over Japan with an understanding of fundamental knowledge so that they can be ready to commence relief operations as soon as a disaster occurs.

By focusing on the disaster affected area and the victims of the disaster, this program aims to train volunteer leaders who can work together with diverse groups of volunteers, cope with various environmental situations, and have the ability to explain situations in a flexible manner, while at the same time taking into account the constantly changing situations in a disaster affected area.


7-day Training Program in Ishinomaki

■ Knowledge: Fundamentals

  • Natural disasters
  • Disaster relief system structure
  • Disaster relief volunteer activities
  • Psychological first aid
  • Safety and disaster management


■ Practice: Field training

  • First aid
  • Outdoor activities
  • Meal preparation training
  • Volunteer leader training, etc.


■ Making Judgments (Workshops and discussions)

  • Case studies

Program participants will study case studies of the various situations that may occur in a disaster affected area and learn about the judgments that need to be made with regards to relief efforts while presenting their own responses to the situations.