International Development Secretary Priti Patel today visited Essex Fire and Rescue Service in Colchester where she met members of the UK’s International Search and Rescue (ISAR) team.
DFID supports these lifesavers when they are sent to the front line in response to rapid onset emergencies such as earthquakes or floods, where they use their expertise to help rescue people from collapsed buildings, search for missing individuals and coordinate local rescue efforts.
There are 265 personnel around the UK who stand ready to be deployed as part of the UK ISAR team and these individuals, along with their humanitarian counterparts in the health service and across NGOs will be publically thanked for their efforts on Saturday 19 August, when at Westminster Abbey the UK will celebrate the UN’s World Humanitarian Day.
International Development Secretary Priti Patel said:
The whole country should recognise these brave men and women who, without a moment’s hesitation, can deploy to some of the world’s most dangerous and challenging places to save lives.
The members of Essex Fire and Rescue Service that I met today show the very best of British values. For 365 days a year, they stand ready to respond to a natural disaster, selflessly choosing to risk their own lives to save others and alleviate human suffering.
By providing this British expertise and helping countries better prepare for and deal with long-term crises, we are playing our part in building a more stable, secure and prosperous world for all which is firmly in Britain’s interest.
The World Health Organisation has recently recognised DFID’s deployable field hospital, which the ISAR team help to deploy, as meeting world class standards.
This is just one demonstration of the UK’s vital global leadership role, in continuing to raise the bar and push others to step up their own response.