Creating more resilient communities and encouraging more complete, integrated disaster responses can mean a more prepared population and faster disaster recovery. A key component to better disaster response and recovery is empowering people to help themselves. More and more, cities and states are realizing that an integrated approach to disaster planning is a better way to involve multiple agencies and groups to assist in recovery. Federal, state, and local governments, nongovernmental groups, and communities are all integral to disaster recovery efforts. With various apps, open source tools, and platforms for companies to post important information–such as power companies publishing outage and restoration data–disaster planning is easier than ever. Integration between groups is essential for more efficient information sharing and large scale recovery.
Collective Planning & Response
Disaster planning is most effective when it is done as a collaborative effort. When communities and local agencies work together to spread awareness, promote resources, and aid in aftermath recovery the community as a whole benefits from the response. Things like individual planning and situational awareness are important concerns during disaster planning, but ensuring that a larger community awareness is forged can be even more crucial to the well being of large numbers of people. Often people are unclear about what resources are available to them after a disaster or may not fully understand the risks or specific preparations for certain kinds of disasters. Spreading planning information locally can help to integrate a more comprehensive disaster preparation into the community.
Community Volunteering & Donations
A great way to individually help integrate a disaster response in your community is to volunteer with relief organizations, such as the Red Cross or a local charity. Getting involved in planning and raising awareness within your community can have a strong impact on integrating disaster preparedness into day to day life. A huge part of this is collecting donations and informing people how they can help and what resources are available in the aftermath of a disaster. Disasters affect everyone, so planning should go beyond individual preparation. Take a role in helping your community prepare by volunteering time or donating money to relief organizations. Raising the importance of doing this things can also encourage others to do the same and will make the community preparation all the more integrated and comprehensive.