In the wake of explosions in the Brussels Zaventem Airport and Maelbeek subway station this morning, all IFE Brussels students and staff have been confirmed as safe. The IFE program — staff, students and all — has been moved for a day or two to Anvers, where courses will be held, outings arranged, and there will be plenty of time to talk over events, follow fhem from a comfortable distance, process things together, and simply breathe and move more freely than is the case right now in Brussels. Anvers is the home of IFE Local Director Kathleen Caenen, who with her husband is doing the utmost to make students feel at ease.
Students spent the day in the city of Anvers about an hour outside of Brussels. They had a chance to process yesterdays events, as well as carry on with their regularly scheduled course. While a bit of distance and space are important, as Brussels gets back on its feet and transportation is reopening, the group is looking forward to returning to their internships. Being embedded in the local community through their internships is especially important at times like these, as it allows students to grieve and process this shared experience as part of that community.
The most important thing is to be well informed of the situation, and selective in news sources, as misinformation abounds in situations such as these. For news in English, we suggest the BBC and from Belgium Deredactie.
IFE will publish updates as the situation in Belgium unfolds and information is confirmed.