Back in the villages, Volunteers organized a First-Aid-Course for RSV-Teachers

By: Hannah Beckmann
20.06.2017 News

Now we are already two months back in Germany but the memories that we brought from the villages are still with us. This time we had two and a half weeks in Ghosaldanga, which we could use for seeing friends and working a little.

But in the beginning work wasn't the dominating experience, because it was the time of the spring festivals in the villages. Even though two of us have been to India several times, this period of the year was new for all of us. We had the chance to witness the yearly Baha Parab (flower festival) with all its careful preparations first hand. Hundreds of Santals came to the football ground right between Ghosaldanga and Bishnubati for celebrating together. For the little ones games had been prepared and several groups presented their traditional dances, some of them while wearing a vase on their head. The evening was filled with a cultural program and the night started again with dancing. We had a wonderful time that day and are very happy with our choice to come earlier as planned to the villages to see this festival.

Some days later also the Holi-Festival was over and we pulled an all-nighter to prepare for a workshop a few days later. We brought the idea from home to use the short amount of time we had to hold a first-aid course for the teachers of the RSV primary school. Together with Sanyasi, the headmaster of RSV, we decided to do a three-hour workshop. The day of the program we were positively surprised to see not only the teachers from RSV, but also the health workers of the villages coming to attend.


                      During the practical unit - Speaking to an unconscious person

We started the three hours by giving theoretical information about how to behave correctly in different emergency situations such as drowning, choking on something, epileptic seizure, snake bite and so on. During this session we also presented the stable side position and the chest compression for resuscitation. We were so happy about the concentrated atmosphere that we almost forgot to have a break for some tea. One of the most interesting things to hear was, in which situations people of the villages normally have been acting differently than taught in our course. After tea it was time for some action. The teachers had to perform. To the rhythms of "Stayin' Alive" by the "Bee Gees" we practised with them how to carry out a resuscitation correctly. In case of a breathing patient we also taught the stable side position.

To prevent the given information from getting lost on its way from the short-term to the long-term memory we gave a handout to every participant. We were very glad about the strong interest that everybody showed. Even some villagers who couldn’t participate in the workshop still wanted to get a handout.

Since two of the three of us had already collected some experience in working in the villages before, we used the days we had left to teach English in the evening school of Ghosaldanga and the RSV.

With the end of our stay coming closer we organized a cycling tour for the Hostel boys and girls. Together we drove to a park close to the villages. As always it took us one hour longer than calculated to get there but when we finally reached the park we spent a wonderful afternoon with the children.

Again our time in the villages flew by even faster than expected und we are already excited about our next visit, whenever that will be.

Judith, Markus and Hannah, 14th of June, 2017