THE BOTTOM- Members of the Department of Community Development, the Public Health Department, Care and Youth Caribbean Netherlands (ZJCN) and Mental Health Caribbean (MHC) last week took part in a training provided by Junny Josephina, director of Krusada from Bonaire. Krusada is the organization that runs the women’s shelter on Bonaire.
The training dealt with multiple aspects and included how the participants saw their personal and professional development, but it also addressed how to work together as a team, how to create a culture that brings unity and how to deal with conflict situations through de-escalation techniques. Cool, calm and collected were essential words.
It was a very practical-oriented training, explained Josephina. “Team building is key, because eventually they all have to work together to help women. They learned how to correctly deal with clients, which is extremely important because the people that they will help are a vulnerable group. You need to be aware of your body language, your tone, your words, because all of that says a lot to the client,” said Josephina.
The training was an initiative of the Community Development Department and is part of the process to set up the shelter on Saba. Further training will follow later in the year which will be provided by Kadera, an organization in the Netherlands that specializes in assisting victims of domestic violence and abuse.
The shelter on Bonaire already exists five years and is running very well, said Josephina. “The presence of a shelter is very much needed. It took us a while to prepare before we could open a women’s shelter. We also did trainings to get our team ready,” he said. This was done with the assistance of Kadera.
“The most important aspect in setting up a shelter is your team, because they have to do the work. It takes a lot of preparation to set up a shelter. The focus group is very vulnerable so you need to train your team. Without proper preparation and training, your team will do more damage than good,” said Josephina.
The Krusada director said he was very impressed with the Saba team. “I see a lot of potential. They are eager to grow and learn. They have a true passion for Saba and its community. You feel that they really love this island and its people. That inspires me.”
Working together is vital in the process and Josephina was content to see a united team. “I believe that if you form an alliance, work in unity, you can achieve a lot. This team does not lack passion, compassion, commitment and knowledge. This a very dedicated team. I see how they sacrifice all for their clients, their community.”