Disaster relief through volunteers

DART members will often come in a little after a disaster has occurred, but our aim is to stay longer and to develop a working, sustainable system that can be taken over by the local partner.

GAiN always works through local partners. Therefore, it is important that we can strengthen their efforts through a consistent presence during the time of crisis.

DART is a joint initiative of all GAiN offices worldwide. Because of this, DART teams consist of a diverse group of people from various countries and cultural backgrounds.

A professional background in disaster relief or humanitarian aid is welcomed and desired, but GAiN does not require it of their volunteers. The most important competencies a DART member needs are willingness to serve, flexibility and resilience. At the training, which is mandatory for all future members, additional skills that are necessary will be taught by experienced trainers.

The DART idea

Motivation

"Why I'm volonteering"

"DART is for me a way to express my inner passion to serve those in need and see them flourish."

Elseline, Holland

Application

The DART idea  

DART responds to different types of disasters, including:     

  • Natural disasters (earthquake, flood, …)
  • Complex disasters (man-made conflicts, armed conflicts, …)
  • Slow onset disasters (famine, drought, …)  

The main response areas are:

  • Distributing food and non food-items
  • Providing emergency shelter
  • Building of storage facilities for relief goods
  • Supporting of local initiatives
  • Medical support*
  • Trauma healing*
  • WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene)*

*GAiN has specialized teams for these types of responses, which can be added on to a regular DART mission. The DART team is then responsible for setting up the infrastructure for these teams.

The DART mission

The focus of a DART mission can change throughout the mission. In the beginning emergency relief is provided. Throughout the course of the mission, DART is always looking for opportunities to contribute to the long-term development of the country. This includes the training of locals to provide humanitarian aid to fellow citizens in need. Building personal relationships is key in this process.

Team sizes and length of a DART mission:

  • Team sizes may vary depending on the type of disaster. A minimum of 3, and as many as 15 team members may serve in a disaster area at the same time.
  • A DART mission can last from one month up to 12 months. Throughout this time, team members will be rotated in and out of the disaster area according to their availability. In order to maintain continuity in the field, the minimum stay of a team member is two weeks.