Perception of foreigners as volunteers


Again, practitioners’ opinions regarding the utility of foreigners being able to volunteer in emergency and disaster situations, or how they might share their knowledge of emergency or disaster situations with local populations, were varied. Some practitioners held a positive attitude towards the general impact that foreigners could make: “If they offer their help they are well disposed to give it” (G3; R), and they also highlighted the benefits of having non-native volunteers as representatives for communities which they considered hard to reach: “Having Chinese mediators and spokespersons… it was more than spokespersons; there are even Chinese police officers. They are more credible to them and having a foreigner inside an association who can deal with local foreigners and stop the crisis could be very important. In the event of a quake where you need to send out people who don’t want to leave and stop working, as they are afraid that they lose everything, having a Chinese explaining everything to them and convince them to leave for their own safety, is very important” (G1; R).

Note: See source document for full reference.

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