Op CALUMET: 3 tips to all deploying during a global pandemic

June 29, 2021 - Defence Stories

By Master Corporal Laurel Purdie, Material Management Technician, Canadian Armed Forces


Master Corporal Laurel Purdie, Material Management Technician, Canadian Armed Forces

While many of us have experienced the challenges of serving abroad, most have never deployed in a fluid environment dictated by a global pandemic. This opportunity is quite unique, and lessons are learned. Here are my three tips to all who will be deploying in the near future.

1.     Flexibility is Key

From physically not attending pre-deployment training due to provincial restrictions, to traveling into theatre, and working and living in a COVID-19 controlled environment, the pandemic has impacted every facet of my deployment. Without being optimistic, when faced with various and continuous changes, the journey would be long and painful. Flexibility is, without a doubt, key to the success of your deployment.

2.     Quarantine for Peace of Mind

Quarantine is, no matter where you are, a reality. Conducting a quarantine as soon as you arrive on the ground may not be pleasant and exciting but never lose track of the bigger picture. It is a mitigation measure that not only ensures protection of your force and operations but also everyone who is actively contributing to the mission. Enjoy the opportunity of adapting to your new environment without being rushed and be ready to hit the ground running once out!

3.     Humour is Morale

I will embrace the day we can high-five each other again for a job well done. Yet, there is nothing that impedes our ability to laugh while working six feet apart. My personal take away from this is: keep your sense of humor and know that we are all going through the same frustrations; something that is frustrating to you is most likely annoying others as well. Have some faith that all will come out in the wash.

At the end of the day, it is on you to make the most out of your deployment, and remember, it could always be worse!

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