(English) Chef Ibrahim feeds team for 200 days in lockdown in Western Sahara

(English) Ibrahim is a dedicated cook working to support humanitarian mine action in Western Sahara.  During lockdown, Ibrahim kept the team fed for 200 days!  He kindly spent some time telling us how his role support mine action work... 

Ibrahim is a dedicated cook working to support humanitarian mine action in Western Sahara.  During lockdown, Ibrahim kept the team fed for 200 days!  He kindly spent some time telling us how his role support mine action work… 

Tell us a little bit about yourself… (career background, hobbies, or family perhaps?)

My name is Ibrahim I am an ex-military soldier.  During my time in the military, I was a tank driver.

I am married and a father of six children – four sons and two daughters who are all living in refugee camps near Tindouf. 

After the cease fire in 1991, I was tasked to work as a cook in Tifarity at the UN Team Site for one year.  I then went back to my military role until a demining non-government organization (NGO) advertised for a cook and I was selected to do this job and have been working in the mine action sector ever since.

Can you describe your role and how it supports mine action?

I am very proud to be a cook for our operations staff and I do enjoy it.

I believe that my role is very helpful because it allows and supports the staff to focus on operations instead of cooking so they can focus on their job.  All my colleagues are happy and grateful by having me as their cook. I am supported by a great support team who provide all the food stores and ingredients so I can ensure we prepare fresh and healthy meals for our staff when they finish clearance operations.

On many occasions, I have been deployed with a tasked team independently in remote areas where I was responsible cooking and the team’s overall camp running.

What motivated you to work in mine action?

I was impressed by the teamwork and good management that you come across in the mine action sector and wished to be a part of this community.

In addition, this work benefits my people and my country.  I am glad to work with them and I can help to improve living conditions of my family for their future.

Describe a highlight of your career in mine action?

I love my job and I will continue to improve my performance in the future to do my job right and make my colleagues happy.  I enjoy knowing my work fuels the team and keeps them healthy while doing their job. I really enjoy that my work gives them a chance to unwind together over food at the end of a busy day.

How does the work you and the wider project team deliver benefit the local community?

This work is a noble job and every one of us is proud to be a part of this.  Results of the project work are magnificent – there is more safe land and people are happy to get more freedom of movement, children can go to local schools in all villages and most of grazing lands are free of mines and ERW. 

Thank you Ibrahim for answering our questions and your hard work in Western Sahara.