On January 19th, Josh and Anthony Alvarez led an exciting Crisis Management training at Church of the Advocate. The training taught staff and volunteers from emergency meal sites how to de-escalate potential crisis situations, but also how to process and learn from crises that do occur. Training participants shared experiences of meal guests acting aggressively and explained how they had reacted well and what tools they wish they had had to better diffuse the situations. Josh Alvarez discussed what cues to look for to assess whether someone may become aggressive and how to recognize and be cognizant of people’s triggers. Josh Alvarez also presented ways emergency meal sites could prepare for crises like having guidelines for staff and volunteers and equipping them with whistles to immediately alert others about potential emergencies. Participants enjoyed an interactive exercise where they practiced defensive moves to use if someone physically attacked them. They practiced what their reactions would be like to a hair grab, hand grab, or bite. Participants came away from the training with a better plan in place to prevent crises at meal sites and to keep staff, volunteers, and meal guests safe when crises do occur.
Please visit United for Impact to RSVP and learn more about future Philadelphia Food Access Collaborative trainings.