August 17, 2016 12:45

Making a Difference in People’s Lives Is the Best Part of Working Overseas

Sindh (Pakistan), November 2011. Pietro visits the local communities hit by the devastating floods in summer 2010 and 2011.

World Humanitarian Day story by Pietro Fiore, Head of Mission, Cesvi Myanmar

I have been a humanitarian worker since 1998. I started working with Cesvi in Pakistan in 2010 to help the victims of the worst floods ever experienced by the country. It was the first time I had worked with Alliance2015 partners and had a chance to appreciate the multiplying effect of the consortium approach.

After that I moved to Somalia, and I currently live in Myanmar where Cesvi works in more than 1,200 villages covering the livelihood and food security sector to increase the availability and access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food. We also work in the health sector by controlling epidemic diseases and supporting the delivery of primary healthcare services, especially for mothers and children.

What makes the difference in Cesvi interventions is the participatory approach aimed at reinforcing the power of communities in the decision-making process, and increasing the sense of ownership and sustainability of the projects.

My day-to-day life is less exciting than people expect; I bounce between offices and meetings, and I read and write reports and e-mails. But when I visit the field and see the results of our efforts, and the enthusiasm and commitment of our staff and beneficiaries, I get a sense of the importance of my work.

Seeing young colleagues at work reminds me of my beginnings, of the changes and the sense of dignity that our job brings to people’s lives – this is the best memory of my many years overseas, even if I sometimes operate in dangerous conditions.

I can do this job also thanks to my family and friends back home who support me and believe in the same values: the importance of contributing to reaffirm democracy, universal human rights and social justice.

**************
This story is part of Alliance2015 World Humanitarian Day campaign, featuring stories of humanitarians working with our members. For more information about the campaign and other stories, please click here.

Read Pietro's story in Italian on our member Cesvi's website.