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Humanitarian aid: a story of compassion

Emergency Rehabilitation
South Sudan

Tichaona Mashodo manages the HI flying team in South Sudan. He reflects on his 10-year humanitarian commitment.

Tichaona Mashodo, head of the flying team in South Sudan

Tichaona Mashodo, head of the flying team in South Sudan | © Gilles Lordet / HI

I have been working for HI for two months now in South Sudan. I am leading the flying team[1], which intervenes during emergencies at the request of NGOs to provide rehabilitation care and psychosocial support.


The situation is very volatile in South Sudan due to the violence since 2013 although it has calmed down in recent months. We are confronted with high-risk security conditions, difficulties accessing remote areas, some being cut off from the rest of the country because of heavy rains, for example. The humanitarian needs are immense.


From agronomy to humanitarian aid

I have been working in the humanitarian field for ten years. At first, I was an agronomist. I worked for about ten years with the Ministry of Agriculture in Zimbabwe, my native country.


My humanitarian commitment is a story of compassion. I wanted to put my skills at the service of others, helping to save lives at a time when humanitarian crises seem to be on the rise around the world.


For the inclusion of people with disabilities

I first joined CAFOD (Catholic Agency For Overseas Development) in Zimbabwe and South Sudan, then World Vision in South Sudan. I began in positions related to my core skills: livelihood, then I switched to emergency programme management and inclusion. 


I feel very connected to issues of inclusion for people with disabilities. I have joined HI as I had long been attracted to this organization, which has a unique mandate: to help the most vulnerable, including people with disabilities, in crises and particularly in conflict situations. Unfortunately, people with disabilities can be left out of the picture in emergencies. HI helps to tackle this injustice.


[1] Based in Juba, the capital of South Sudan, the flying team comprises 12 members, rehabilitation and psychosocial support specialists. They intervene for any emergency in any part of the country at the request of a partner NGO.

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