Operation: Mission Pakistan

Mission Pakistan PDF

 

After
Action
Report
PAKISTAN
2010
TABLE OF CONTENTS

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Starting in August, torrential rains kicked off the 2010 monsoon season in Northern
Pakistan. With record rain fall, rivers quickly swelled and began flooding towns and villages
throughout the region. Unfortunately, this was only the beginning of a large scale, slow
moving disaster of epic proportion. As the rains continued, the water moved south due to
Pakistan’s topography. At its peak, roughly one-fifth of Pakistan’s land area was covered
with water and over 20 million people were displaced from their homes.
Team Rubicon began assessing the disaster from the beginning. TR did not initially
deploy because of the low number of traumatic injuries caused by the flood. However, Dr.
Eduardo Dolhun, an expert on Oral Rehydration Therapy, saw an emergent need for oral
rehydration solution (ORS) to combat cholera, dehydration and diarrhea. Dr. Dolhun – who
pioneered an advanced ORS called Drip Drop – offered to donate 8,000 units if Team
Rubicon would provide the medical, logistical, and security support for a Pakistan operation.
Utilizing TR’s network of resources and contacts, the team started developing a plan and
evaluating risk. After the first two weeks of the disaster, and many conflicting reports about
the current situation on the ground, the following concerns were evident:
• Poor Security. On August 27th, the Taliban issued a threat that foreign aid workers
were a target for Taliban fighters.
• Lack of coordination between the Pakistani government, the Pakistani Army, and
NGO’s operating in Pakistan.
• The need for a trusted local partner/liaison who had access to the most affected
regions, where aid had not yet arrived.
The state of security in Pakistan underscored the need for vetted sources. After securing
visas from the Pakistan Embassy in Washington DC, and assessing invitations from multiple
Pakistani NGOs, Team Rubicon decided that they would partner with Dr. Yasmin Rashid
and the Pakistan Medical Association (PMA).
On August 28th TR deployed a two-man advance team to conduct a pre-deployment site
survey of the southern Punjab region. On arrival the team met with the PMA, secured
transportation and lodging, and identified safe routes of travel for the arriving team. Once
the main body arrived three days later, TR set out to flood affected areas near the town of
Muzaffargarh. Along with a well-trained and motivated group of Pakistani doctors, TR was
able to set up daily clinics and treat more than 1,000 people per day. Some of the significant
accomplishments achieved by Team Rubicon include:
• Treated and assessed over 3,500 patients, providing life saving interventions in
some cases.
• Established relations with trusted sources in Pakistan, paving the way for future
operations and assistance
• Worked together with CNN to increase world awareness of Pakistan’s current
situation as well as demonstrate TR’s capabilities.
• Acted as good will ambassadors for the U.S. TR was the first group of Americans
some of our Pakistani friends had ever met.
• Exercised the TR response system and refined SOP’s
TEAM RUBICON, After Action ReportUltimately, the situation in Pakistan was unique. For obvious reasons, many NGOs were
weary of responding to the dire situation as it unfolded; the security situation posed serious
problems to aid workers and caused many well-meaning Americans to keep their wallets
closed. However, Team Rubicon felt that it could effectively operate because of its veterans’
vast experience working in similarly uncertain environments. TR’s presence in these afflicted
areas changed many locals’ opinions of Americans; a benefit that cannot be quantified but
should not be overlooked. In closing, while this mission was not a traditional ‘react’
operation, TR still found a niche that needed to be filled, and filled it effectively.
William McNulty Jake Wood Matt Pelak
VP, Team Rubicon President, Team Rubicon East Coast Coordinator
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O P E R AT I O N O V E RV I E W
OPERATION NAME: MISSION PAKISTAN
DURATION: 14 days
OPERATION DATES: August 28, 2010 – September 10, 2010
OPERATION TYPE: Field Triage (T3); Oral Rehydration
LOCATION: Muzaffargarh, Pakistan
ELEMENTS: TR Advance Team, TR Main Body
TOTAL CASH RAISED: $7,908.28
TOTAL PAYPAL FEES: ($237.25)
NET CASH RAISED: $7,671.03
TOTAL EXPENSES: ($11,608.46)
NET: ($3,937.43)
IN-KIND DONATIONS: In excess of $2,000
TEAM RUBICON, After Action Report
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Operation Summary
PRE-DEPLOYMENT
In early August 2010, Team Rubicon began sending introduction letters to embassies in
Washington DC. About the same time, unusually heavy rains in Northern Pakistan caused
rivers and levees to swell beyond their limits, causing one of the greatest natural disasters in
modern history. As result of the letter writing campaign and due to the unfolding disaster, the
Pakistan Embassy Chief of Staff requested an in-person meeting with TR to discuss its
capability to react to the flood. During this meeting TR offered to deploy a medical team if
the Pakistan government could provide logistical support to reach remote areas affected by
the flood. The Chief of Staff confirmed that Pakistan needed international disaster
assistance and that TR should proceed by either: 1) having the embassy find TR an NGO or
military partner (which would take a long time he explained) or 2) have TR identify a partner
and secure an invitation letter by itself.
After the meeting Team Rubicon continued to monitor the flooding in Pakistan, however
TR decided against deploying a team due to the low number of traumatic injuries reported in
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the news. Because of this decision, Dr Eduardo Dolhun, a pioneer in oral rehydration
therapy, urged TR leadership to rethink how it defined trauma.
As cases of dehydration
and diarrhea began to rise, Dr.
Dolhun again approached TR
about bringing his oral
rehydration solution called Drip
Drop to Pakistan. With news
that the disaster had displaced
over 20 million people, and,
with an agreement with Dr.
Dolhun that he would donate
enough Drip Drop ORS to treat
up to 8,000 people, on August
20th, Team Rubicon’s Board of
Directors voted 3-0 in favor of
deploying to Pakistan on an
oral rehydration therapy
mission to prevent cholera,
dehydration, and diarrhea. Dr.
Dolhun immediately shipped
over 200 pounds of Drip Drop
ORS to the TR staging area in
Los Angeles.
Per the TR deployment model, TR associates immediately began reaching out to
Pakistani NGOs and ultimately received five partnership invitations from NGOs operating in
the Punjab, Baluchistan, and Sindh provinces. TR decided to partner with Dr Yasmin Rashid
of the Pakistan Medical Association out of Lahore because the Southern Punjab region was
the most severely affected region at the time. With invitation letter in hand, TR spent two
days at the Pakistan Embassy in Washington DC securing visas for seven members. TR
was able to swiftly attain Pakistan visas because of the help of a former Pakistani
ambassador.
With visas in hand, William McNulty, Team Leader for the Pakistan mission, and Zach
Smith, West Coast Regional Coordinator, rendezvoused at TR’s Los Angeles storage facility
to stage gear and coordinate a plan to send an advance team to Pakistan.
DEPLOYMENT
On August 28th TR deployed a two-man advance team led by East Coast Coordinator
Matt Pelak to Pakistan. Once in country, the team spent one night in Islamanad before
traveling to Lahore to coordinate directly with Dr. Yasmin Rashid of the Pakistan Medical
Association. Dr Rashid and Pelak agreed to a plan where TR would establish medical clinics
near the town of Muzaffargarh. TR would use the Thal Limited jute factory as a base of
TEAM RUBICON, After Action Reportoperations. The Thal Limited jute mill was a gated manufacturing plant on the outskirts
of the town.
Team Rubicon’s advance team flew Ethidad from NYC – Abu Dhabi – Islamabad
On September 1, the main body, consisting of Dr. Eduardo Dolhun, Medical Student
Glenn Volk, former Navy Seal Kaj Larsen, former Marine William McNulty, and a two man
CNN camera crew, departed for Islamabad from the Los Angeles International Airport.
Team Rubicon’s main body flew Emirates Airlines from Los Angeles – Dubai – Islamabad
Team Rubicon’s main body
arrived in Islamabad on the
afternoon of Friday, September
3rd, and was met at the airport
by the advance team that had
deployed days earlier. Once in
Islamabad, Team Rubicon
loaded its gear onto the team
bus and headed to a safe
house where they spent the
evening due to an unforeseen
monsoon. In the morning, TR
loaded the bus and headed
overland to Lahore. After a five
hour drive the team met Dr.
Yasmin Rashid at the offices of
the Pakistan Medical
Association. Dr Rashid briefed
TR on the area where it would
set up medical clinics in
Muzaffargarh and provided a
team of Pakistani doctors who doubled as interpreters.
After a two-hour delay due
to heavy monsoon rains, the
team loaded the bus and
departed for Muzaffargarh via
Multan. The trip to Lahore took
approximately 5 hours by bus
and TR experienced no
security issues along the way.
Once TR arrived in
Muzaffargarh, the team
unloaded its gear into Thal
Limited’s guest house,
performed a quick
reconnaissance of the
surrounding area, and began
breaking down 33 pounds bags
Dr. Eduardo Dolhun arrives at the Islamabad International Airport with over
200 pounds of Drip Drop Oral Rehydration Solution.
6
TR medical clinic Day 2: On the edge of flood in Muzaffargarhthe formatting of the pull quote text box.]
of Drip Drop ORS for it’s first day of medical operations the next morning.
TRs first day of medical
operations in Pakistan was on
September 4th. After eating breakfast
consisting of rice and eggs, TR
loaded up the team van with enough
oral rehydration solution to treat 500
victims suffering from dehydration or
diarrhea. Since TR was using Thal
Limited’s guest house as a base of
operations, the company requested
TR spend the first half-day treating
Thal employees who were affected by
the flood. TR’s first clinic treated
approximately 1,000 individuals with
life threatening dehydration and
malnutrition to minor skin infections,
including scabies.
On day 2, TR set up a medical clinic along the edge of a washed out road on the
Eastern edge of the Indus River. The clinic was located inside a small pharmacy, providing
TRs organic pharmacy with an additional assortment of medical supplies. This location also
allowed TR to have separate entrances for male and female patients, a necessary practice
in Pakistani culture. TR was again able to effectively treat over 1,000 patients, including a
critically ill female patient with malaria and severe dehydration.
On day 3, TR was able to utilize local sources to determine which camps were not
receiving medical aid and were in dire need of assistance. TR organized vehicles and set
up mobile clinics in several of these
camps throughout the day. These
were some of the most ill patients
that had been seen yet, due to the
lack of an organized response from
local government.
On Day 4, TR gathered up its
personnel and equipment for the
long drive back to Lahore. Team
Rubicon was forced to suspend
medical operations because
fundraising in the States was not
sufficient to cover expenses being
incurred. During the ride, TR
members reflected on this short but
significant deployment and the possibility of returning to continue the work that was started.
The deployment, while short, demonstrated that American medical teams can operate safely
in Pakistan by adopting the TR model.
TEAM RUBICON, After Action Report
TR medical clinic Day 1: listless baby receives ORS via syringe
by Glenn VolkA R E A S O F A N A LY S I S
1. Transportation
a. Air (private, commercial)
b. Ground
2. Staging Area
3. Local National Employment
4. Host Government
Endorsement/Coordination
5. NGO Coordination
6. Security
7. Medical
a. Typical Wounds
b. Medical Supplies
8. Communication
9. Use of Social Media
10. Fundraising
Areas of analysis will be presented in the following format:
Summary: Summary of issue and how Team Rubicon specifically dealt with it
Recommendation: What lessons TR learned, and how it should proceed in future
operations
Action: What steps need to be implemented by TR to ensure the recommendation is
followed
A N A LY S I S
TRANSPORTATION
SUMMARY
Team Rubicon arranged air transportation through Emirates and Etihad Airlines. The
advance team flew Etihad Airlines from New York City (JFK) to Islamabad via Abu
Dhabi. The main body flew Emirates Airlines from Los Angeles International (LAX) to
Islamabad via Dubai. Once the advance team arrived in Islamabad, it became clear that
they would have to travel to Lahore in order to meet face-to-face with Dr. Yasmin
Rashid, Team Rubicon’s local liaison. The advance team flew Pakistan International
Airlines from Islamabad to Lahore, returning to Islamabad via the same method to greet
the main body arriving from Los Angeles.
Once back in Islamabad, the advance team hired an 18 passenger van for 8 days at
a cost of $85 USD per day. The bus came with a Pakistani driver who slept with Team
Rubicon throughout the deployment. While not an off-road vehicle, the bus proved
worthy of fording washed out roads with as much as a foot of water. Having the team
bus allowed TR to reach the edge of the floods in the rural outskirts of Muzaffargarh.
While Team Rubicon established medical clinics in these austere areas, the bus served
as a secure area to stage TRs equipment.
8RECOMMENDATION
Team Rubicon could have made a bigger impact in Pakistan had it had an
established relationship with the Pakistani military. Both the Pakistani military and the
U.S. military were using rotary wing assets to reach remote areas which were
inaccessible by ground transportation. Team Rubicon must place emphasis on building
relationships with foreign militaries in order to reach the heaviest affected regions in
disaster zones.
ACTION
• Develop foreign military relationships through the Defense Attaché offices
of embassies in Washington DC.
• Require advance team to liaise with foreign military once in country.
• Develop memorandum of understanding with the US military in order to
create economies of scale in disaster relief operations.
STAGING AREA
SUMMARY
Team Rubicon rallied in New York City and Los Angeles, bringing together
members from Northern California, Southern California, Washington DC, and North
Carolina. Supplies staged in Los Angeles included 200 pounds of Drip Drop oral
rehydration solution and the TR West coast team gear which is located at a storage
facility in Burbank, CA.
TR did not proceed to Pakistan as a single unit because it decided to deploy an
two-man advance team. The advance team ensured the main body would immediately
be able to proceed to medical operations when it arrived in country.
Once in country, Team Rubicon used the Thal Limited jute factory as its base of
operations. The jute factory was a gated manufacturing plant with private security. TR
staged all gear inside the guest house and only deployed each morning with enough
gear to complete the days mission.
RECOMMENDATIONS
Team Rubicon must make every effort to introduce team members prior to
conducting medical operations. The two members of the Pakistan advance team had
never met each other in person and this caused some confusion at the airport as one
member forgot his cell phone. Regional Coordinators should host quarterly functions for
Team Rubicon personnel so that all members are familiar with each other.
TEAM RUBICON, After Action ReportACTION
• Continue to develop regional teams for the West Coast, Midwest and East
Coast
• Have regional team leaders host quarterly events in order to introduce
members to the rest of the team.
LOCAL NATIONAL EMPLOYMENT
SUMMARY
Team Rubicon employed only one local national during its deployment to Pakistan.
The TR bus driver spent 10 days with the team as it conducted operations between
Islamabad and Muzaffargarh. The bus cost TR $85/day and the bus driver lived with TR
personnel throughout the deployment. During medical operations in southern Punjab, a
team of Pakistani doctors from the Pakistan Medical Association was attached to Team
Rubicon. The doctors all spoke English and doubled as translators for TR.
RECOMMENDATIONS
Team Rubicon should continue to place emphasis on employing members of the
local community. TR will eventually leave a disaster zone, but it must impart skills on
local nationals who are ultimately going to solve the problems that affect their fellow
countrymen. Local nationals also mitigate risk as they become loyal and invested to the
team. Trusted local nationals help soften TRs footprint and are able to recognize threats
and anomalies in ways members of Team Rubicon cannot.
ACTION
• Build a database of trusted local nationals who have helped Team Rubicon
conduct medical operations overseas.
• Assign a TR Ambassador to maintain contact with TRs trusted source
network at least once a month.
HOST GOVERNMENT ENDORSEMENT/COORDINATION
SUMMARY
Team Rubicon’s deployment to Pakistan was not specifically endorsed by the
Pakistan Embassy in Washington DC. The Pakistan Embassy initially reached out to TR
in response to TRs letter writing campaign. TR sought an official letter of endorsement
10from the Pakistan embassy due to conflicting reports about satellite phones and other
types of equipment being confiscated by Pakistan customs agents at the Islamabad
International airport. While the Pakistan embassy refused TRs official letter request, it
did quickly turnaround visas for Team Rubicon. TR was able to secure visas for all
seven members of the team in two days.
Prior to arrival in Pakistan, Dr Yasmin Rashid notified the National Disaster
Management Authority (NDMA) of Team Rubicon’s arrival. The NDMA is the lead
agency at the federal level to deal with the whole spectrum of disaster management
activities in Pakistan. Charged with coordinating the emergency response at the federal
level for Pakistan, the NDMA was kept apprised of Team Rubicon’s movement and
location throughout the deployment.
RECOMMENDATIONS
Team Rubicon must continue to build relationships with foreign embassies in order to
make host nation governments aware of the capabilities that TR brings to a disaster
zone. TR must also develop liaisons within embassies where disasters are most likely to
take place. Developing liaisons within each embassy will shorten the time it takes for TR
to obtain necessary visas or support letters prior to departing the United States.
ACTIONS
• Continue embassy campaign by introducing TR via a letter to all 300+
embassies in the Washington DC area, but initially focusing on the top 30
disaster prone countries.
• Always attempt to secure an official letter from the host nation embassy prior
to deployment.
NGO COORDINATION
SUMMARY
Team Rubicon deployed to Pakistan as a guest of the Pakistan Medical Association.
Prior to deployment, TR used a letter of support from the PMA to secure visas from the
Pakistan embassy. Once TR arrived in country, it found itself operating in areas that had
seen no medical response since the flooding began in early August. Due to the
overwhelming number of victims seeking medical attention, other than the PMA, Team
Rubicon was not able to coordinate with adjacent NGOs out of the pure fact there were
no adjacent NGOs operating in TRs area of operations. The Pakistan Medical
Association did send follow-on medical teams to Muzaffargarh
TEAM RUBICON, After Action ReportRECOMMENDATIONS
Team Rubicon must develop
continuity of care relationships with
adjacent NGOs immediately upon
entering a disaster zone. TR leadership
made multiple attempts to add itself to
the WHO health cluster, but ran out of
time due to congested road traffic and
a tenuous security environment. TR did
meet with Dr. Jorge Rodriquez of the
WHO in Multan, however TR was
instructed to drive across the city to
another WHO location to register.
Needing to reach Lahore before
sundown for security reasons, TR
leadership made the decision to
forego registering for the WHO health
cluster.
ACTIONS
• Team Rubicon must make every attempt to add itself to the World Health
Organization health cluster upon arriving in a disaster zone.
SECURITY
SUMMARY
Pakistan presented TR with possibly
the most challenging security
environment in its first four missions.
Security is paramount in TR operations
and Pakistan is base for the Pakistani
Taliban and al-Qaeda terrorists. As the
TR advance team departed for Pakistan
two events worth noting took place: 1)
On August 27th, the Taliban issued a
threat that foreign aid workers were now
targets for Taliban fighters in Pakistan.
2) On September 2nd, the day the TR
advance team arrived in Lahore, three
suicide bombers blew themselves up on
a Shiite procession on the eastern side
of the city, killing 25 and wounding more
People carry an injured person on September 1, 2010
after three suicide bombers targeted a Shiite Muslim
procession in Lahore, Pakistan.
The Pakistan Medical Association holds a press conference with
Team Rubicon. Dr. Yasmin Rashid is center.than 180. The suicide bombing was the first major attack in Pakistan since the
devastating floods engulfed nearly 20% of the country.
The suicide bombings and the Taliban threat underscored the importance of having a
good security plan in country. The first step was developing a strong local liaison who
came vetted through TR’s network of trusted sources. The Pakistani community in
Chicago placed TR in contact with Dr Yasmin Rashid of the Pakistan Medical
Association in Lahore. Dr Rashid arranged for TR to use the Thal Limited jute mill as a
base of operations and provided TR with a 5 man armed contingent from the Elite Police
Commandos. The Elite Police Commandos were the special counterterrorism police of
the Punjab constable forces. In addition, a five man armed private security force was
provided as well. The private security force was organic to the jute mill and was armed
with shotguns and pistols. In addition the NDMA was notified of all TR movement.
RECOMMENDATIONS
Thus far Team Rubicon has not needed weapons on any of its missions. However,
carrying weapons should not be discounter. Once TR decides to deploy to a country, it
initiates a risk mitigation process designed to minimize the threats that exist within a
particular area. Part of the process is
developing a local liaison who comes
vetted through TR’s vast global
network. In addition, TR has worked
closely with host nation security forces
on each of its first four missions. TRs
risk mitigation process and strong
working relationship with host nation
security forces may not always prevent
a security incident from taking place.
TR leadership should consider
obtaining the proper training and
licensing to allow its members to carry
firearms while deployed overseas. TR
should continue to fully integrate itself
with local security forces.
ACTIONS
• Contact Task Force Inc and determine how they secured proper licensing
from the US State Department to carry weapons overseas.
• Whenever possible liaise with the host nation military when TR arrives in
country. Liaise with local security forces when TR reaches its area of
operations (AO).
MEDICAL
Elite Police Commando escorts East Coast Coordinator
Matt Pelak near a displaced persons camp in
Muzaffargarh, Pakistan
TEAM RUBICON, After Action ReportSUMMARY
TR encountered a variety of
ailments during its 14-day operation
in Southern Punjab. These ailments
ranged from severe dehydration and
malnutrition to scabies and other
sorts of skin diseases. While TR
initially deployed solely on an oral
rehydration mission, the team found
cases of malaria, boils, and even
multi-drug resistant TB. TR was
further inundated by displaced
persons with pre-existing non-life
threatening medical conditions that
were not the focus of the mission.
Prior to embarking, Team
Rubicon assembled a general idea of
what diseases we would encounter
from well-published sources, such as the W.H.O. Health Cluster Reports, and direct
reports from individual doctors from various sources, such as the Pakistani Medical
Association.
TR therefore had a general idea of what they would encounter prior to landing. TR’s
aim was to focus on acute, treatable, and life-threatening illnesses directly related to the
flooding. The main diseases were respiratory and gastrointestinal, followed by skin
diseases and mental illnesses associated with the emotional trauma of disaster.
Orthopedic injuries were not greater than the normal baseline prevalence for the region.
Knowing that the percentage of gastrointestinal illnesses would increasingly become
a major problem as clean water became scarcer, we focused on a portable and easily
administrable solution: oral rehydration salts (ORS). We also brought antibiotics to treat
the various respiratory conditions. Our main goal of focusing on life-threatening, acute
illnesses was complicated by chronic diseases such as tuberculosis and malnutrition and
acute non-life threatening diseases, such as scabies.
Our efforts greatly benefited by working alongside local medical professionals who
provided key insights into site location, security issues, interpretative services, and
referral channels for follow-up treatment.
RECOMMENDATIONS
The Chief Medical Officer should be charged with gathering as much medical
intelligence about the region, including endemic diseases, acute diseases directly
related to the disaster at hand, and a fundamental understanding of the capabilities of
the national, regional, and local medical establishment. In addition, TR must quickly
Men line up outside TR medical clinic on day 2
14gather an understanding of the country’s history, culture, and language to encourage
cultural respect and humility of the patients TR treats.
TR should further explore offering basic triage skills to all TR members. In addition,
TR members should be educated as to the importance of acute mental illnesses
associated with large-scale traumatic events.
TR should also focus on understanding generic names of drugs (rather than brand
names) as this would help medical professionals know what drugs one another is talking
about, as this was a minor barrier to communication at the beginning of the mission.
TR must establish triage and treatment procedures each evening as it prepares for
the next mission. The Chief Medical Officer and host nation medical professionals must
establish a unified triage technique that prioritizes and limits the cases to ensure that the
most critical cases get treated first.
ACTIONS
• Establish a unified triage technique between the Chief Medical Officer and
local national medical professionals.
• Ensure medical providers are aware of the different names (generic) for
drugs depending upon the country.
COMMUNICATION
SUMMARY
Pakistan presented Team Rubicon with a unique challenge because TR did not have
an interpreter organic to the team. TR decided to rely on the Pakistan Medical
Association to provide translation during TRs deployment. This caused confusion during
field operations as only one of the Pakistani doctors spoke fluent English.
RECOMMENDATION
Team Rubicon did not scrub its list of Urdu speakers prior to deploying to Pakistan.
This oversight cost TR valuable time as the team primarily relied on one Pakistani doctor
who spoke fluent English. Fluency was not
ACTIONS
• Ensure local doctors working with Team Rubicon are fluent in English.
• Deploy with an interpreter organic to the team whenever possible.
SOCIAL MEDIA
TEAM RUBICON, After Action ReportSUMMARY
ON August 20th Team Rubicon sent out an email newsletter announcing its plans to
deploy to Pakistan. A total of 558 people opened up the newsletter and 14 of these
people donated a total $1,725. TR
sent out a second on September
7th, 560 opened up this newsletter
and 8 people donated $466.
TR maintained a constant
social media presence throughout
the deployment using Twitter,
facebook, and the blog to
disseminate information. TR used
Posterous, a social media
publishing platform that allows
multiple social media sites to be
updated with a single email, to
bring awareness to the Pakistan
flood.
TRs social media presence
was hampered by the fact William
McNulty was acting as both the Team Leader and the Social Media expert. These two
positions require too much work for one person to handle effectively.
RECOMMENDATIONS
Team Rubicon needs to identify volunteers who can double as story tellers on TR
missions. TRs social media presence in Pakistan suffered from a lack of detailed blog
posts. The impersonal character of the posts had a negative effect on fundraising. TR
needs its social media experts to be compelling story writers.
ACTIONS
• Separate the positions of Team Leader and Social Media expert.
• Ensure social media expert is capable of telling compelling stories
FUNDRAISING
SUMMARY
Team Rubicon made the decision to deploy to Pakistan under the assumption that it
would probably have to dip into its reserves to pay for the operation. Though the longterm
effects of the Pakistani floods will likely be greater than the effects of the Haitian
earthquake, the flooding just did not command the same media attention or sympathy
16
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Dr. Eduardo Dolhun updates TR blog via BGAN satellite
communication systemfrom donors. TR did however use its base of support to raise funds quickly. Donors
quickly responded to TRs Pakistan deployment announcement with over $1,700 in ‘flash
cash’. Between the announcement of the Pakistan mission on August 20th and the team
returning stateside, TR raised a total of $7,671.03. The total cost of Mission Pakistan
was $11,608.46, placing TR in the red by $3,937.43.
$0.00
$200.00
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Pakistan‐Donors
TEAM RUBICON, After Action ReportRECOMMENDATIONS
Team Rubicon must seek alternative forms of fundraising rather than solely depend
on its innovative use of social media. TR donors will experience fatigue if we continually
ask the same
ACTIONS
• Continue focus on building corporate sponsors and identifying high net worth
individuals who are sympathetic to TRs mission.
18K E Y L E S S O N S L E A R N E D
1. The Team Leader and the Social Media expert are mutually exclusive
positions. These jobs must be performed by separate members of the team
due to the amount of work required in each position.
2. Have all roles clearly identified prior to leaving on a mission. The
security element, the Chief Medical Officer, the Team Leader, and supporting
roles must be clearly defined to the team and the local liaison prior to leaving
CONUS.
3. Establish the mission parameters with the local liaison prior to Team
Rubicon arriving in country. Accurately convey the teams capabilities and
limitations as well as the specific mission of the team to the local liaison prior
to arriving in country.
4. Ensure all team members capable of performing their assigned
position. The team leader needs to fully understand the background and
skills of potential team member before he assembles a team.
5. Flexibility is key to Team Rubicon’s success. TR operates in areas
untouched by conventional aid. Each team member must be comfortable
operating in an environment where uncertainty is at a premium.
6. TR should also focus on understanding generic names of drugs (rather
than brand names) as this would help medical professionals know what drugs
one another is talking about
TEAM RUBICON, After Action ReportK E Y A C T I O N S
1. Continue embassy letter campaign designed to introduce foreign
governments to the capabilities of Team Rubicon.
2. Create foreign national database cataloging the contact information for
trusted sources who have helped Team Rubicon accomplish its mission
overseas.
3. Assign a TR Ambassador that maintains contact with foreign nationals who
have helped TR on mission.
4. Standardize gear across the regional teams and ensure regional team
coordinators are trained on each piece of equipment.
5. Establish triage and treatment procedures each evening as TR prepares for
the next mission.
20