Solidarity is strong: emergency volunteers on the rise
Since last year, 27,000 new volunteers have registered to help in the pandemic. Team Österreich is one of the coordinators of the emergency volunteer work. Right at the top of the program at the moment: COVID testing and vaccination.
Team Österreich has adapted well to the current situation. Team Österreich is only looking for medical staff for the nationwide vaccination and test campaign, according to Gerry Foitik, Federal Commander in Charge of the Red Cross. Doctors and qualified nursing staff are eligible for delivering the vaccinations. There are already enough administrative assistants in the team.
COVID vaccination process consists of several steps, but only medically trained people can help. Tasks include giving vaccine related information, managing approvals, delivering injections and providing follow-up care. Johannes Guger coordinates the volunteer work at the Red Cross and explains how the process works: You can register for volunteering via the Team Österreich platform. You indicate your skills and training, which are checked afterwards. Thanks to the possibility to register in advance, helpers can be quickly mobilised for current events. You will be notified spontaneously about an assignment, although this is not an obligation. Team Österreich’s network is already so dense that it usually doesn’t take long to find helpers and the willingness is often even greater than the need.
Since 2007, volunteers have been mobilised through the Team Österreich to work in emergencies and natural disasters. The campaign was founded by the Red Cross and Hitradio Ö3. During the Corona crisis last year, around 27,000 registrations were added to the portal. Today, Team Österreich is a network of 73,000 volunteers, which is available throughout the country for spontaneous missions. Last year this network was particularly needed in neighbourly help and the voluntary support was also crucial during the refugee crisis six years ago.