Welcome to the inaugural episode of “Oh Absolutely,” a podcast about religion, ethics, politics, and current events.
- Host: Rev. Steven D. Martin
- Guest host: Rev. Annette Flynn
- Guest: Dimple Dhabalia of “Roots in the Clouds”
- Topic: Refugees, the nature of trauma, and healing
This podcast is sponsored by Vennly and is a production of the Lakelands Institute.
Today’s guest is Dimple Dhabalia. From her website:
At Roots in the Clouds we are committed to putting the “human” back into humanitarian by creating brave spaces for leaders across the sector to do their own inner work in order to drive positive organizational change and support workforce well-being so all humanitarian warriors can get back to doing what they do best – serving the most vulnerable people in the world.
Mahatma Gandhi once said “the best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” Service is fundamental source of human connection and well-being. Serving others helps you feel competent and purposeful, and it gives your actions added meaning by extending their value to others. It allows you to share a common purpose with others, and when you feel a common urgency, and hear a call for help that you are able to answer, your instinct is to step up and come together. It makes you feel you matter, and mattering feels good. The people whom you serve are often members of the most vulnerable populations in the world, suffering in ways most people could not imagine. But just because you chose a career in service of others doesn’t mean your own well-being has to suffer as a consequence – and yet it does for many within the humanitarian sector. Exposure to traumatic events and danger, long working hours, stress, and frequent, often back-to-back deployments abroad, mean that humanitarians are at high risk of developing depression, burnout, and anxiety. A survey run by the Guardian in 2015 found that 79 percent of respondents had experienced mental health issues, and 93 percent said they were related to work. A separate study found that only 20 percent of humanitarian workers felt their organizations were supporting them. Over 50% said they’d experienced or been diagnosed with anxiety, and 44% with depression. Panic attacks and post-traumatic stress injuries were cited among over 1/5 of these staff. You are brave and empathetic – but at the end of the day, you’re still human and you can’t continue to advocate for others with zeal if you don’t serve yourself first. Serving others matters to you, and serving you matters to us. At Roots in the Clouds we use the latest evidence-based tools and resources to support you in prioritizing your well-being so you can continue to do your work because the world needs your service.