MAG has worked closely with the Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD) to develop and launch a new training session to teach the key principles of effective and ethical explosive ordnance risk education.
Explosive ordnance risk education (EORE) is one of the five pillars of mine action. And the reason for that is simple: if done well, it saves lives.
Life-saving lessons seek to reduce the risks posed by mines and unexploded bombs by raising awareness of the dangers posed and promoting safer behaviours.
"It is essential to do EORE to teach people to stay safe until landmines and other explosive ordnance are cleared," says MAG's Senior Community Liaison Advisor, Sebastian Kasack. "Given ongoing conflicts which have resulted in the laying of improvised mines, as well as large population displacement, casualty rates have increased over the past five years. And half of the casualties are children."
"The need for effective life-saving lessons has never been greater. And this new course aims to give people the essentials to understand what it takes to be able to deliver EORE to the highest standards."
The course “Introduction to EORE Essentials” comes as the latest available statistics show that more than 5,500 women, girls, boys and men were killed and injured by landmines in 2019, while there was also a 92 per cent increase in the number of cluster munition casualties.
On average, someone is injured or killed by mines and explosive remnants of war every 90 minutes. The vast majority of these casualties are civilians, and nearly half are children.
The global pandemic has seen refugees, internally displaced persons and returnees become particularly vulnerable to risks from landmines and unexploded bombs.
At the same time, restrictions on movement and person-to-person contact have forced organisations like MAG to innovate the way life-saving lessons are delivered.
MAG has pioneered digital life-saving lessons, the use of virtual reality, clowns, puppets and other ways of reaching at-risk women, girls, boys and men with vital safety messages.
But innovation is only possible with the kind of solid understanding of principles of effective EORE that courses like “Introduction to EORE Essentials” aim to teach.
The course is available to practitioners and the public here — it would not have been possible without the EORE Advisory Group and support from the Italian Government and Agenzia Italiana per la Cooperazione allo Sviluppo.