In their first planning meeting of 2021, the YES Alumni Steering Committee in the West Bank discussed topics for new alumni activities, and one of these ideas was a workshop on first aid. To get the ball rolling, the YES Alumni Coordinator, Nofouz Maswada, reached out to Hind Neiroukh, who is a friend and a classmate at medical school.
Hind is a certified First Aid Responder, Basic Life Support Instructor, and seven-year Red Crescent volunteer. On February 16, she conducted a two-hour First Aid workshop for 17 YES alumni at the AMIDEAST office in Ramallah. The aim of the workshop was to introduce the YES alumni to some general first aid concepts, including vital signs and management of common emergencies like epilepsy, syncope, bleeding, and poisoning. To comply with COVID-19 health and safety protocols, the alumni wore face masks and maintained social distance.
Since the YES alumni have not met in person for nearly a year due to COVID-19, the workshop began with an icebreaker. Afterwards, the alumni did an online pop quiz on Kahoot to familiarize themselves with general first aid knowledge. After the assessment quiz, Hind presented a slide show on first aid and then gave a visual demonstration of different first aid techniques. Most of the alumni didn’t have a strong background in first aid, so Hind designed the workshop to cover the fundamentals.
Hind focused on teaching the alumni general rules and tips. For instance, Hind emphasized that the main rule in first aid is "me first.” This means that the “first aider” has to make sure it's safe to step in and help. Hind also shared how to measure pulse and respiration rates. Then she explained the nature of epilepsy, misconceptions about epilepsy management, and experiences she has witnessed working in first aid. The alumni also learned about different types of bleeding and their treatments. The last topic was about poisoning, and Hind had to correct many misconceptions on this issue.
The alumni were actively engaged throughout the workshop, including back-and-forth questions and answers with Hind. At the end of the workshop, the alumni completed a quiz to evaluate how much they learned. Sara AlQubaj shares, "The workshop was very informative and interesting. What was shocking was the amount of practices that we usually think are correct but turned out to be wrong! So, we didn’t only learn new things, but we also corrected some of the misconceptions that we had.” The YES alumni are always seeking new ways to learn how to be responsible citizens in society!
Read more about alumni workshops in the West Bank here!
Sara Alqobbaj (YES 2016–2017, West Bank, placed with PAX in Worthington, OH)
Nofouz Maswada (YES 2016-2017, West Bank, placed with AFS-USA in Portland, OR)