The International Humanitarian Assistance Symposium will be held in Miami, June 7 – 8 2012, organized by The Family Assistance Foundation and Intercruises Shoreside & Port Services. The symposium will enhance industry response to emergencies and disasters, uniting different sectors through knowledge sharing and thus ensuring those involved in an unforeseen tragedy are given the support they need.

The two day event will consist of a series of educational panels, practical workshops and experiences recounted first hand by disaster and accident survivors and responders. Specialist subjects to be discussed include the role of Humanitarian Assistance with regard to terrorist attacks and an examination of international protocol for death notification. www.ihas2012.com Family Assistance Foundation is an independent non-profit organization established for the purpose of empowering people following tragedy. It has taken a research led approach to identifying the best possible way to respond and support people in an accident or emergency.

The annual symposium provides a platform to share these lessons and discuss how they can be applied in real life situations.

“The unfortunate truth is that accidents and disasters happen. Even with advanced safety and prevention programs in place, it is impossible to foresee when and where a coach will crash, a person will become ill at sea or when technological or natural disasters will occur. We don’t claim to have a full proof plan for humanitarian response, but through our survivors and responders we can share lessons learnt with others on how to respond when disasters happen," said Jeff Morgan, chairman and co-founder, The Family Assistance Foundation.

The symposium will provide information on the international resources available in the event of a disaster or accident.  The Global Survivor Support Network of The Family Assistance Foundation has trained members worldwide and acts on behalf of organizations, should they need to provide humanitarian support in a location in which they have no local presence.

“With greater expectations on international businesses to take the duty of care once a client, guest or passenger is receiving their service, being prepared for the worst scenario becomes a corporate requirement. Many international businesses are unaware of the global resources available to assist in emergency situations. This symposium provides the knowledge and networking opportunities for organizations to forge partnerships that will ensure the appropriate response to an emergency or disaster in locations worldwide," commented Mark Robinson, Intercruises, managing director.

The announcement follows the recent news that Intercruises is undertaking full Go Team training in partnership with Aviem International, a global leader in providing emergency planning  and consulting services, becoming  the first international cruise industry ground handler to have this level of emergency response.