Fire fighters, rescue personnel, life-safety professionals and relief crews… At our core, we are simply big ole softies, but when alarm goes off, the warning siren blare, the weather patterns build into a furious red blob. The adrenaline starts going and time has come… You know what you are made for and why. You rush into what others fear.
Every year, I get the privilege of getting down to places like Nicaragua, Mexico and The Philippines to do something for people I don’t even know. I also get to meet some amazing friends and servants. Bend Fire Department and San Francisco Fire Department are two of most giving groups I know and I got to hang out with them this time last year. We laughed and weeped over what we saw… what we became aware of… and grew too know. And this month, they are doing all over again… this time with even more gusto. They join Emergency Response Services of Latin America (ERSLA) for another round of training and giving.
I am bummed to say, this year I won’t be able to make this trip, but have determined to dig in deeper with the ERSLA… Their work has won my heart as well as hundreds of others around the US and Nations abroad. So for those of you who don’t know about ERSLA… Here is a few tid-bits of information.
ERSLA is managed by a team volunteers and professionals from various backgrounds.Part of the staff and board reside in Nicaragua while others are in various regions of the United States. Each member focuses on their specific talents based on their personal backgrounds and experiences. These dedicated employees, volunteers, and advisors contribute many hours of service to help us save lives and improve communities.Find out more about each member of our staff and board of directors below.
ERSLA believes that sustainability in emergency response services of a country can best be achieved by community integration. ERSLA works with local emergency responders to identify non-emergency projects that improve the quality of life for people in local communities.Through these projects, community members have an opportunity to build relationships with the emergency responders and collectively find ways to improve emergency services in a non-intrusive manner.
I have been traveling to Nicaragua and other places to work with groups and people who’s heart is to change the world. Everyone has gifts that have yet to be tapped into. Getting stretched is the perfect place to find your meaning. Weaknesses are simply strengths in the making and personally, I have many. One never really understands what he has until he sees a culture who has never had it… and may know nothing about it.
What we have is perishable and what we need is often what we can not reach for.