Islamabad :Advocating the immediate training of the newly-formed Prime Minister’s Corona Relief Tigers force, economists and policy experts unanimously agree that a national database containing individual level details of volunteers regarding their qualification, skills and location should be automated through a management information system for the initiative to deliver the goods during the current outbreak of coronavirus in the country. The agreement came during an online meeting on 'Training of Corona Relief Tigers Force' organised by the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) here. Prime Minister’s Special Assistant on National Security Division and Strategic Policy Planning Dr Moeed Yusuf and Special Secretary of the Cabinet Division Dr Safdar Sohail were also in attendance. Dr Moeed highlighted the key action points through which think tanks could help the government organise volunteers and train them for the immediate needs at hand in light of the current coronavirus crisis. SDPI executive director Dr Abid Qaiyum Suleri said think tanks and academic institutions can mobilize their networks for providing training modules and guidelines for the volunteers as well as the trainers, through IT-based modes such as short infographics and documentaries. SDPI joint executive director Dr Vaqar Ahmed suggested that the government piggyback on the existing efforts by charity organisations like Edhi Foundation, Akhuwat and Saylani Trust to access the vulnerable communities. He further stressed the need for a real-time dashboard, which can be used to track engagement with communities. "This exercise will be important for rapid learning and will also identify any mistakes being committed," he said. The experts also suggested creating different hierarchies of the relief force at the community, district and provincial level and mobilizing volunteers based on their specific skills and trainings at different levels. They said Pakistan had a good opportunity to analyse the shortcomings in its social protection sector, and expand its reach to marginalized communities, who are not covered by existing social protection schemes. Also highlighted in the meeting was the need for ethical training and ensuring that the volunteers take precautions for their own safety. The experts said Pakistan’s National Scouts, Janbaz Force, Girl Guides and the networks of religious forces could be mobilized to register as volunteers. They said registered members of those organisations and BISP’s enumerators’ network in all the districts of Pakistan were already trained to deal with the public and have access to communities and would be very important members of the Corona Relief Tigers force. The meeting highlighted that Union Council offices and prayer leaders may also be helpful with regard to identification of beneficiaries needing volunteers’ help and needs-assessment. Among other speakers were Dr Sajid Amin, Dr Hina Aslam, Shakeel Ramay, Moazzam Bhatti and Ayesha Qaisrani.