Canadian Consulting Engineer

RedR Canada Reports Successful Year

The formation of RedR Canada in November 2002 was a project launched by ACEC, the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers (CCPE), the Engineering Institute of Canada (EIC), and the Canadian Academy of Engineering. The four founding partners saw...

August 1, 2004  By David B. Chalcroft, P. Eng., Chair, RedR Canada

The formation of RedR Canada in November 2002 was a project launched by ACEC, the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers (CCPE), the Engineering Institute of Canada (EIC), and the Canadian Academy of Engineering. The four founding partners saw RedR as the perfect vehicle to give Canada’s professional engineers the opportunity to participate in disaster relief operations around the world, not only personally as technical experts in their field, but also as financial contributors through the registration of RedR Canada as a charitable organization.

The creation of RedR Canada fulfilled the goal of ACEC’s Board of Directors, set at their strategic planning session in Kananaskis, Alberta, in June 2000, to elevate the IMAGE of our industry within our profession and in society in general by “implementing a formal role for consulting engineering firms and professional engineers in Canadian disaster relief efforts internationally and in Canada.”

The 18 months since RedR Canada’s creation has been a time of rapid development, and we can be proud of our results:

Membership. We have accredited 43 new members into the RedR Canada Registry. Eleven are classified as members-in-training until they acquire enough experience to be effective in the field.

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We initiated three placements, and eight of our RedR members were on assignment in Bolivia, Bosnia, Chechnya, Iraq, Afghanistan and Sierra Leone, as of March 31.

Training. We launched the RedR Canada Training Program, featuring Canadian trainers, and can now draw from the portfolio of RedR training courses for the benefit of our members and clients. The first courses, consisting of a “Training of Trainers” session and the RedR foundation course “Essentials of Humanitarian Practice,” were held last summer in Kingston. This spring, we followed up with a Security Management Workshop in Toronto.

Our training team has also conducted two sessions at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.

Image. With the assistance of HRH Princess Anne, the good news about RedR Canada is getting outstanding publicity in Canada’s media and throughout our professional journals. In September 2003, HRH presided over a memorial service to Canada’s fallen aid workers and the inaugural RedR Canada Awards event. We were honoured to have HRH return to Toronto in June 2004 to present RedR Canada’s 2nd Annual Award for Humanitarian Service to a very well deserving Canadian, Stephen Lewis for his tireless efforts to bring the HIV/AIDS disaster in Africa to the attention of world leaders through his role as the UN’s Special Envoy.

As we go forward, the presence of RedR Canada and its talented members will become an increasingly important component of Canada’s efforts to relieve the suffering of innocent victims of natural and man made disasters around the world. Our objectives for the next year are to:

1. Accredit a minimum of 40 new members, bringing our overall total to more than 83.

2. Conduct four training courses and increase the number and skills of our Canadian-based trainers.

3. Make 10 placements in international disaster situations.

4. Have 30 per cent of our membership on one or more assignments during the fiscal year.

5. Secure a stable financial platform, through appeals to companies and individuals for donations.

6. Improve service to Qubec-based non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and accredit a large percentage of French-speaking members.

7. Continue to earn public recognition for our humanitarian efforts, thereby enhancing public perception of the engineering profession and the consulting engineering industry.

RedR Canada is indebted to ACEC and its member firms for their ongoing support, and to the four past-chairs of ACEC who serve on the Board of Directors — Wayne Bowes, Andrew Steeves, Bob Lorimer, and Dave Chalcroft.

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