This week I was invited to Global Medic’s 2012 Heroes Night hosted by the inspiring Rahul Singh. The event was held atÂ Arcadian Loft – aÂ newly re-launched and one of Toronto’s most sought after event spaces with historic charm and modern sophistication.
GlobalMedic is the operational arm of the David McAntony Gibson Foundation (DMGF). DMGF is a registered Canadian charity that runs capacity building programmes in post conflict nations and provides disaster relief services to large scale catastrophes around the world.Â Their team is staffed by professional Canadian rescuers – specifically paramedics, police officers, nurses, doctors and firefightersÂ - who volunteer their time and skills to help those in need around the world.
It truly was an honor to be in the presence of great women and men who have bravely put their lives on the line to serve both locally andÂ internationally in emergency and crisis situations.Â We also had the honor of having remarks from Hon. David Onley as well as Mr. Peter Mansbridge and Mr. John Tory as honorary co-chairs for the event.
I spoke with Matt Capabianco, Manager, Emergency Programs who joined GlobalMedic as Manager of Emergency Programs in May, 2007. His GlobalMedic mission deployments include Jakarta, Indonesia floods in 2007; floods of southern Bangladesh in August 2007; Peru earthquake in August 2007; Cyclone Sidr, Bangladesh in November 2007 and the Sichuan, China earthquake of May, 2008; Flooding in Brazil and Honduras 2008; earthquakes in Haiti and Chile 2010, floods in Pakistan 2010. He recently returned from a deployment in Somalia and Kenya.
Matt introduced me to his friend and colleague Sean who works for Niagara EMS. He and his girlfriend Brenna are both paramedics and volunteer for Global Medic! Sean’s last deployment was end of the year last year to Turkey after the devastating earthquake that hit the country. When I asked him what was the most exciting part of his volunteer work he immediately said it’s that Global Medic is about capacity building and creating sustainable so that the work can continue long after they leave. He shared a story about his experience in Turkey and ended it saying “One of the greatest things is that it wasn’t just us working there. There are so many other people and partners who were involved especially from Turkey too. We were working together to manage the situation.”
A truly inspiring evening for us all. A big thank you to all the the brave women and men who take time out of their lives and volunteer themselves to the high risk situations that Global Medic responds to.
To learn more about Global Medic and how you can support these missions, visit their website at www.globalmedic.ca.Â
Click here for more photos from the 2012 Global Medic Heroes Night Event.