Since January 2007, the United Nations System Staff College (UNSSC) and the United Nations Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) have been preparing staff of UN Agencies, Departments, Funds and Programmes to identify and respond to threats.

The Safe and Secure Approaches in Field Environments (SSAFE) programme has trained 60,000 UN and associated personnel (i.e. NGOS, International Organizations and Governments Agencies) in 65 countries leveraging a thorough safety and security curriculum. SSAFE consists of theoretical and practical aspects that the UNSSC and UNDSS have been running in Turin (Italy) and in the field.

Core modules of the standard curriculum include:

  • Radio communications procedures
  • Weapon, landmine and UXO awareness
  • Incident management
  • First aid
  • Travel and convoy security
  • UN Security Management System
  • Hostage survival
  • Cultural awareness

The flexibility and modular structure of the curriculum allow it to be easily customized and adapted to different working contexts and realities.

Programme objective, approach and outputs

The objective of the SSAFE programme is two-fold.

  • First, assuring the quality and effectiveness of the standard safety and security training curriculum capable to respond to the ever-changing perils and menaces affecting UN activities
  • Second, enabling UN Agencies, Funds and Programmes to build human resources capable of training their own staff in the SSAFE curriculum.

Drawing on the initial experience of the programme, the UNSSC and UNDSS developed a new integrated approach. This enables frequent updates and further improvements in the effectiveness and reach of the SSAFE training curriculum.

The programme is now in its tenth year having impacted staff from 744 organizations through 2177 courses.