Liz Bates is a Birmingham community doctor which means she brings a very special set of skills to her volunteering. Despite that, she found working in the chaos and madness of those refugee camps in Greece in 2016 incredibly tough.
What do you do when you first arrive in that kind of situation where there is huge demand and very few resources?
We talk about the importance of just creating a sense of calm so that individuals can access their own inner resources and resilience.
And how do you look after yourself in the face of such unrelenting and desperate human need? It is OK to take pride in your volunteering, to celebrate the successes and enjoy working with others.
It’s more than OK – it’s what keeps you going and protects you form burning out. It’s Practical Selfish Altruism.
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Liz has been a part of the Refugee Support family since working with us in Katiskas and Alexandreia refugee camps. Last year she took a more active role working with John to resettle in the UK a refugee family from South Sudan as part of our Birmingham Welcomes project.