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Friday, 05 October 2018

EMS lecturers support Indonesia rescue efforts

PROVIDING AID: Mustafa Zalgaonker and Xavier Millar PROVIDING AID: Mustafa Zalgaonker and Xavier Millar

Two academics in the Emergency Medical Sciences Department have departed for Indonesia to assist with humanitarian aid and care following the devastating earthquake and tsunami.

The death toll following last week’s disaster has climbed to more than 1 400 and hundreds of thousands of people have been left homeless.

The EMS Department’s Mustafa Zalgaonker and Xavier Millar left for Indonesia on Wednesday as part of a team from The Gift of the Givers Organisation.

The organisation, which has a longstanding relationship with the EMS Department, has mobilised a team of search and rescue specialists to in search, rescue and recovery operations as well as the delivery of much needed humanitarian aid and healthcare.

The department has previously assisted in a number of Gift of the Giver disaster response operations, including the Nepal earthquake in 2015 and the recent Knysna Fires in 2017.

Zalgaonker, a CPUT alumnus, has been a lecturer with the Department since 2015. He is a seasoned Emergency Care Practitioner (Advanced Life Support) and a highly skilled Advanced Rescue Technician with both national and international disaster response experience, having previously responded to the earthquake disaster in Nepal in 2015 and the Kynsna Fires in 2017.

He will be graduating with his Masters: Emergency Medical Care from the department at the end of 2018. 

Millar is the department’s rescue lecturer and has been with the department since the end of 2017. He has a highly experienced Advanced Life Support paramedic and a skilled Advanced Rescue Technician with expertise in Urban Search and Rescue. 

The team are scheduled to arrive in the disaster zone over the weekend.

“The department also has additional staff members on standby as the Gift of the Givers has indicated the possibility of a second rescue team being dispatched in the coming days as the needs on the ground become more apparent,” said Benjamin de Waal, Senior Lecturer / Head of Program: Bachelor of Emergency Medical Care.

Written by Ilse Fredericks

Email: Frederickskennediji@cput.ac.za