Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Milan, Italy - A team of eight Italian disaster specialists sponsored by the International Association of Scientologists arrived in La Romana, Dominican Republic, today, and is moving on to Haiti.

Coming from Malpensa Airport in Milan, they took with them 2.7 tons of supplies, including more than 1,300 pounds of medical equipment and tents, 815 pounds of food, and 250 pounds of medicine.

The Italian team includes doctors, relief workers and two Scientology Volunteer Ministers trained in disaster response. It is led by veteran disaster specialist Mr. Dino De Pasquale, President of La Pubblica Assistenza Croce Giallo-Azzurra di Torino, a volunteer civil protection group founded in 1992.

The team is now clearing customs to enter Haiti with their truckloads of supplies. Once in Haiti they will join the Scientology Disaster Response Team that has served in Port-au-Prince for the past two months.

The Consulate General of Haiti in Milan, Mr. Marco Umberto Pasini, marked their departure with the following message of thanks:

My dear friends,

In this time of great misfortune in my country, I am moved more than I can say by the volunteers who have come forward to help. Doctors, nurses, emergency medical technicians, volunteers of all kinds have not hesitated to give of their time and skill, setting aside their own personal needs and those of their families.

The immediate emergency in Haiti is now over. However, what remains are the daily emergencies the people of Haiti have to contend with, emergencies newspapers may not consider to be "newsworthy" but which are possibly even more serious than those reported on in the days following the earthquake.

This is where you come in, working in alignment with the traditions and mores of our people-working with the Haitian people. Fortunately, Haitians are accustomed to rolling up our sleeves and helping ourselves-we don't give up or surrender to tears in the face of disaster. And we know you are going there to work, not to be seen on the front pages of newspapers.

You work in the background, planting seeds that will grow and benefit the people in Haiti-seeds of volunteerism. We value your help, your communication, your example to others, and your self-determined contribution no matter the difficulties you encounter.

With sincere wishes for your success,

Umberto Pasini
Consulate General of the Republic of Haiti in Milan, Italy

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Australian Scientologist in Haiti for the Long Haul

Scientologist Peter Dunn, from Adelaide, Australia, flew to Haiti in the first days after the earthquake. He is there for the long run.

A highly trained Scientologist who has worked as a staff member of the Church of Scientology for 30 years, Dunn’s first task once there was to help in the hospitals providing any needed support for the doctors.

With the most immediate medical situations now under control, he is providing one-on-one help using Volunteer Ministers techniques that address trauma, stress and loss. He is also training others.

Peter Dunn plans to stay until Haiti is back on its feet, and to do everything he can to make sure it gets there.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Scientology Volunteer Minister, David Dempster, Makes Helping People his Priority

Clearwater, Florida—David Dempster is a Scientology Volunteer Minister, recently returned from the Church of Scientology Haiti Disaster Response. David operates a community hotline in the Tampa Bay area. Based on his extensive experience as a Volunteer Minister he was asked to carry out a series of seminars in Kenya, Africa last year. Here is his story.

I come from Perth, a beautiful ancient seaport on the east coast of Scotland. I’ve been in the US for 20 years. Most of that time I have been in Los Angeles and for the past four years in Clearwater, Florida.

I have the view that we should all help each other. On a small scale that means helping your friends and familyand on a larger scale it includes reaching out to people in the community and those in need anywhere else on Earth.

When I got to Clearwater I became aware of people who had fallen on hard times and needed a helping hand, and I started running a group called the Tampa Bay Volunteer Minister Hotline. People call in looking for help with their marriage, career, study problems and so on. We help them, using technology developed by Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard.

A few months ago, at the end of August, I got a phone call asking me if I would go to Kenya to deliver Volunteer Minister seminars to various groups. I accepted eagerly. As a self-employed computer consultant I was able to take off time from work. I delivered seminars in communication skills, the basics of organization, drug prevention and conflict resolution. I covered Scientology Assistsprocedures that help orient the individual to the environment, improve emotional tone and enable a person to recover more quickly from accidents, loss, trauma and illness.

I returned to Kenya shortly afterwards and delivered more extensive Volunteer Ministers training to a group of scout leaders from the Kenya Scout Association.

Then this year I traveled to Haiti as part of the earthquake disaster relief mission.

There were patients in the hospitals in Haiti who weren’t responding to medical treatment until they received Scientology Assists. By handling the spiritual and emotional aspects of the trauma, they began to recover.

My Volunteer Minister training made a big difference in my ability to help people there. It is because of that training and the Volunteer Ministers’ skill, that the motto of the program is “Something can be done about it.”

For more information on the work of Scientology Volunteer Ministers visit the Volunteer Ministers blog.