Keith asked me to repost this here from my Peresonal Blog site.
I hope some may find it useful...
An exercise in group planning...
In a previous post, I eluded to the fact that an individual will find it very difficult to survive alone. Many writers will put forward the idea that you can live alone… and you can to a point, as I mentioned before, there will be many things that an individual may not be able to accomplish in a prolonged wilderness self-reliance situation.
As a group, you have the advantage of numbers, many hands make light work as they say… think of it like this:
- Who is collecting firewood?
- Who is gathering water and making it potable?
- Who is making tools and weapons?
- Who is keeping a lookout for danger or rescue?
- Who is checking the trap lines?
- Who is processing any game?
- Who is looking after any sick or injured?
- Who is looking after sanitation and construction?
- Who is cooking meals and preserving foods?
As a group, this can be divided up among you, as an individual, you will have to do all these things alone… whenever possible try to be in a group.
Simple group structure:
No matter how many you may have, try to divide your group into small teams. My recommendation is groups of 12 people, and then divide into two groups of 6 people…
12 is the basic operating unit for planning, and six is the minimum group to conduct scouts and such.
Within the group:
2x Medical Trained – health, hygiene & medical.
2x Hunters – animal harvesting and group protection.
2x Construction – shelter and equipment making.
2x Scouts – information gathering and external security measures.
2x Quartermasters – supply and gathering (water, wild edibles, firewood, etc.)
2x Plans and Leadership – Administration, group discipline, security & protection planning and implementation.
With this setup, you now have two sub-groups of six, while moving a smaller group is easier to conceal than a larger one. In addition, you want to cross train in other skills, for example:
- Scouts and hunters can work and train together:- gather information and provide food
- Leadership and quartermasters:- plan daily routines and treks, manage the effective use of supplies
- Medical and construction: - work together on sanitation and effective shelter, etc.
Each sub- group teaches its skill to other members of the group, that way every one learns how to do things; the subject matter expert is responsible for the activity and supervises the other members of the group. That way the group does, its routine activities while learning new skills or refreshing old knowledge.
Each sub-group is employed in its primary role; however, each individual may be tasked as needed to meet the needs of the group as a whole, for example: if the construction specialists need manpower to dig latrines or put a new roof on the group shelters, then they will “borrow” group members for the task needs.
There are two medical specialists, the senior and junior specialist, in camp the senior acts as the camp Doc and is assisted in their duties by the junior medic.
- Water treatment
- Individual medical assistance
- Emergency Aid
- Daily health inspections (Both of members and of the camp)
- Vector elimination and minimisation
- Waste elimination control (Disposal and removal of both camp and human waste)
- Operation of sick quarters and quarantine
- Coughs, colds and sore holes…
There are two hunting specialists, senior and junior, the hunters are responsible for gaining meat and useful animal products, and they also have the responsibility for protection of group members from both wildlife and human aggression. As with the medical, the senior is the main expert and they are assisted by the junior in the conduct of duties.
- Hunting for game
- Protection of group (internal security whilst in camp and on the move)
- Training group members in weapons safety and application
- Trapping game
- Policing duties
- Assist scout during patrols
Again, there are two construction specialists, senior and junior, construction is responsible for all tasks involving the building or breaking of structures and equipment used by the group.
- Shelter construction
- Tool making and repair
- Tool and equipment improvisation
- Create sanitation and hygiene items for camp
- Build camp security devices for use by hunters and scouts
- Anything that needs to be made or broken
Again, there are two specialists, senior and junior, scouts are responsible for gathering information for the group and security details outside the camp perimeter, during group movement they are used as semi-autonomous lead group who move ahead to look for signs of hostiles and game.
- Information gathering and route reconnaissance
- Information recording and interpretation
- External security (patrols and ambushes)
- Teaches group members about woods lore, scouting and tracking
- Leads patrols in conjunction with hunters
- Conducts observation and listening posts
- Location of water sources and ground suitable for gathering foods
- Leads parties to sources and provides light security to said parties
- Any tasks requiring stealth and observation
- Assist hunters during game harvesting
Again, two members, senior and junior, the quartermasters are responsible for the inventory and supply of equipment needed by the group, and the obtaining and allocation of stores as needed such as rations and tools, or replacement of equipment as needed.
- Inventory of camp goods
- Supply of rations and stores
- Supply of ammunition or components for such
- Allocation of rations as needed for patrols
- Supervision of camp chores and detailing of rosters
- Supervision of equipment maintenance by individuals in the group
Leadership and Plans:
These two are responsible for the administration of the group, they make sure that tasks are completed and keep track of the group’s needs, then allocate those needs to the group members as needed.
- Planning of treks
- Allocation of patrol and security tasks
- Liaison with other groups if they exist
- Day to day administration and decision making (Major decisions would be made by the group as a whole using the “Chinese Parliament” system)
- Works with the quartermasters to manage group needs
- Tasking of group members for various duties through the quartermasters
- Ensures all members are tasked evenly and that no favouritism is used in tasking by keeping track of who has done what over the period.
- Makes decisions based on the information provided by scouts, medical, hunters, construction and quartermasters.
This is just one sub-group, if you have two or three such groups, as you would for a trek or the like you have quite a capability, and the beginnings of a tribal village self-sufficiency organisation.
This is just a rough outline, something to help those who are interested in preparation for trouble of any kind and was inspired by Keith’s post on “The Survival Connection. Part 3.” at Woodsrunner’s Diary BlogSpot. I have based it on my experience in the military and working as part of self-sufficient training teams modelled on the USSF 12 man “A” detachments (SFODA).
This model, I have found to work very well and so adopted it for this exercise…
... Keep your powder dry, your hatchet scored & your head on a swivel, thats how you stay alive...
...All who wonder, are not lost...
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