The first recorded use of psychological first aid in Fiji dates back to 2012, after TC Evans. TC Evan was a severe Category 3 tropical cyclone that affected Fiji, Wallis and Futuna, Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga and New Zealand.
Since then, there have been numerous natural disasters such as landslides, floods, cyclones, hurricanes and public health emergencies such as the COVID19 pandemic.
This Fijian contextualized manual was originally written for CANDO partners as a result of the work carried out by the humanitarian branches of the various Christian denominations. However, as the work progressed it became clear that training was needed for all stakeholders, not just Christian stakeholders, and as such, the Christian component has been added as an appendix to this manual. , while the entire manual is relevant and can be used to train all first responders in Fiji.
The main objective of this manual is to train all first responders in accordance with the
National Humanitarian Policy to:
(d) Conduct a national training of trainers program to gradually ensure that all communities have access to adequate local psychosocial assistance.
o) Improve recovery programs to provide psychosocial and mental health services to all individuals and children, including children in need.
Priority 4: Improve disaster preparedness for an effective response and to “build back better” in the areas of recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction.
National and Local Levels: 33 (O)
Improve recovery programs to provide psychosocial and mental health services to all people in need.
Responders, after being trained in AFP using this national standard, are expected to respond to affected people through gender-sensitive, gender-neutral lenses to be used where appropriate, including disability – mental, physical, disability, etc. mental as well as sensory impairments, practical Principles of Do No Harm, informed consent, confidentiality; that recognizes that individuals, families and communities have changing needs, especially during a crisis situation, and that being able to respond in a way that ensures that the required services and supports are available to people as needed within Fijian law, guidelines, policies, protocols and SOPs, as applicable,
As first responders, the main task is to respond using the principles of AFP without bias, without discrimination and within your skills and abilities. First responders and AFP-trained individuals representing organizations should have codes of practice and codes of ethics to which they adhere, and if these codes are compromised, disciplinary action within each responding organization should be instituted and the protocols followed.
The training manual will be revised every two years to ensure it remains relevant.