FRENCH HUMANITARIAN FIREFIGHTERS AND RESCUE TEAM

PHF (french humanitarian firefighters and rescuers) has been created in 2005 in Saint-Etienne (60km / 40 miles from Lyon).

Our actions :

  • emergency missions after natural disasters
  • ongoing programs in order to support  (regional or national) civil protection systems (Mali, Madagascar…)
  • some missions for the french Ministry of Foreign Affairs : training of firefighters and rescuers in countries having agreements with the french government (Ivory Coast, Central Africa, Bolivia…)
  • congresses about civil protection bringing different countries together to exchange about practices and experiences : adaptation to climate change, crisis management…

Regarding emergency missions, we are able to send a team onfield within 24 hours, as soon as a major natural disaster occurs and a request for international assistance has been made. This team will be mainly composed of firefighters, rescuers and medical staff.

We also have developed two ongoing programs with Mali and Madagascar. Our common purpose is to set up and maintain a civil protection system which is adapted to local constraints. We don’t want to import a French model but to create a specific system suitable for each countries.

Therefore, our association regularly goes to these countries to carry out sustainable development missions: checking of previously implemented projects, considering new issues in order to find new solutions.

Thus, we remain in permanent contact with the local fire brigades through our local offices: Malian Humanitarian Firefighters and Rescuers (PHM) and Madagascar Humanitarian Firefighters and Rescuers (PHMada).

Our first partner and sponsor, the Fire and Rescue Service of the Loire Department, enables us to regularly send equipment that is difficult to find on site: vehicles, fire equipment, trainers, etc.

We sometimes do that kind of missions on behalf of some French embassies (Africa and South-America).

We also organize and regularly participate in various seminars whose theme are about civil protection. This is an opportunity for participants from all countries to exchange with each other and with their counterparts on common issues.

Today our action leads us to help local offices to organize at home events, in order to be closer to the field and its constraints.

We also have partnerships with other associations the aim being to share our skills. Thus, for example, we work with Cart’ONG (an association that helps humanitarian organizations to use free software for cartographic and geographic data), or with a French local association called Noma’s Children specialized in maxillofacial surgery in Africa, Asia…

Whether we are volunteer or professional firefighters and rescuers, retirees, doctors, nurses, pharmacists, administrative staff, mechanics, others… the members of PHF are all ready to volunteer time for others. 

Volunteers contribute as follows:

  •  Decision-making (boards of directors, meetings);
  •  Logistics management (purchases, inventories, material transferring to our local offices…);
  •  Keeping in touch and working with our sponsors and partners;
  •  Monitoring actions and projects;
  •  Preparation, management and participation in onfield missions (sustainable development and emergency);
  •  Representing PHF in various events.

Since 2005, we visited 16 countries and completed a total of 70 missions including 28 emergency missions.

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