The initiative, called the EmerGENcies Protocol, is in its third year of ideation continuing to explore its form. These include members from all regions and the GEN network, blueprint representatives, GAIA Education, and other independent projects unrelated to our networks. The complexity of what is at stake (to design an innovative and holistic response to the growing number of emergency situations), explains the diversity of the projects that make up the EmerGENcies Protocol. Initiator Alfonso Flaquer reports. (read also the report about the working group during the GEN Summit here: http://gen.ecovillage.org/en/node/5848 )
Along with Sarah Queblatin of Mandala Earth Story in the Philippines, we have been trying to help design a platform for EmerGENcies to create a network and to better respond to crisis situations that occur globally and work on their prevention by implementing the best solutions and regenerative system development.
Earlier in 2015, EmerGENcies Protocol was chosen as one of the Projects of Promise Award in 2015 by Kosmos Journal. (Link: www.kosmosjournal.org/news/the-kosmos-shortlist-five-projects-of-promise ). This helps us give attention and interest in our initiative. From then until the GEN Summit in Findhorn this summer, support and commitment have grown steadily. Today we can reveal a first map with projects from all over the GEN regions, individuals and other projects that want to add to this humanitarian cause: communities helping struggling communities.
During the summit, EmerGENcies Protocol had an important role. Some of the key players were able to meet for 5 days to exchange views and get to know each other better. (Please read the report about the Working Group here: http://gen.ecovillage.org/en/node/5848 ) The result is the will to continue to work each from their own project but counting on each other and developing joint initiatives when necessary. For example, some of the projects concerned with the Emergencies Protocol have teamed up to launch the network POSIDONIA for aid to refugees and displaced migrants around the Mediterranean Sea. One of the aspiring GEN members, Skala Ecovillage in Greece, have enlisted the help of members of the Blueprint to build a model of sustainable settlement where members of humanitarian aid agencies could travel to learn the solutions offered from communities and ecovillages.
Clearly, the EmerGENcies Protocol is part of a movement that emerged at the global level of which thousands of initiatives are already ongoing in pursuit of the same goal: to alleviate the suffering of displaced peoples (either because of war, weather, oppression, natural disaster, etc …).
The more we move into the humanitarian cause the more it surprises us how this issue is not only on the front page of newspapers, but it is also bringing thousands of citizens to choose and get involved with the work. The surge in emergency situations is increasing, but it is also amazing how individuals and civil society are responding.
We therefore plan to present the EmerGENcies Protocol network initiative at the World Humanitarian Summit (https://www.worldhumanitariansummit.org), and study the creation of consulting and training seminars for members of aid agencies, voluntary, engineers, etc. In addition the network will disseminate training courses in EDE format intended and designed from the differing situations and affected populations. Also, the Ecovillages Incubator programs will be shared: designed to accompany real and on the ground processes of collective social transformation.
We hope that our initiative can help turn some of these traumatic situations into opportunities to strengthen the affected communities, accompanying their processes, sharing our best practices and our proposals to help prevent such situations in the future.
Communication Officer at GEN-Europe Office in Arterra