UNDAC Dispatch, December 2023: UNDAC Members Spotlight – Colonel Meshari Alfaras from Kuwait

UNDAC members giving in a meeting with Derna/Libya Security Chief, 2023.
© Meshari Alfaras (UNDAC Kuwait)

I started my work in the emergency fieldwork in 2005, as a fire and rescue officer in different fire stations in Kuwait Fire Force.  I’ve been granted different positions such as Head of Plans and Information Section, Head of Emergency Dispatch Centre, and Head of the Plans and Emergency Centre. I have achieved a High Diploma in Fire Safety Engineering 2005, BSc. in Fire Safety & Risk Management, 2011, MSc. in Crisis and Disaster Management in 2013, and PhD in Crisis & Disaster Management in 2020. Since 2017, I have been the national focal point of Kuwait with UNISDR for Sendai Framework, and an UNDAC member, after my attendance to the induction course in Switzerland in 2018.

My first deployment as an UNDAC member was this year, to Libya disastrous flood, which killed thousands of lives, and caused major losses to the infrastructure. As Kuwait is geographically a small country, few disasters occurred in my country. Hence, UNDAC provided me the opportunity to use my skills for the benefit of another country and strengthen my experience and knowledge in the emergency field. 

In my mission to Libya, the UNDAC team stood out, creating an atmosphere that felt like working with family members. I believe that the UNDAC system is the best place to develop my skills and it has given me the opportunity to help people in need in other countries, as well as to meet unique colleagues worldwide.

I am a very friendly person who loves to spend time with family and friends. I love travelling, especially on cruise ships with my wife, my son and my two daughters. I also have a few hobbies such as fishing. My newest hobby is hydroponics, mainly strawberries. Usually, I live in Kuwait, so if anyone needs any advice, do not hesitate to contact me through the Virtual OSOCC.    

Meshari, with the blue hat, at UNDAC meeting with Derna Security chief, 2023. 

Meshari heading to Libya (Derna disaster) with Kuwait Air force, 2023.