I was relieved to see the U.S. infrastructure plan passed at long last. Having seen a steady increase in the number of deadly storms and floods over the years, the modernization of our nation’s infrastructure is essential.
I have worked with several nonprofits in South Texas and along the Texas Gulf Coast. I know first hand how vulnerable they are. Their stories of being unprepared and almost obliterated by natural and manmade disasters are unforgettable. Flooding and wind damage are especially prevalent in Texas. With climate change, we can expect more. Here’s hoping the infrastructure funding will be put to good use soon.
Having become more important to society than ever, nonprofit organizations need to be ready to pivot quickly and methodically when disaster strikes. If they plan well, they can also thrive.
This year, I shared a special menu of information on Carolyn’s Nonprofit Blog about disaster preparation and recovery. You will find it in the margin. In fact, one of my earliest blog posts focused on using social media in disaster situations, “Emergencies: Use Social Media.” It was inspired by the Boston Marathon bombing, and I have continued to update it with new information, including a video presentation by a disaster communications specialist, hosted by Nonprofit Tech Club Austin at Capital Factory.
Here are the articles and items included in my special resource menu for quick reference.
- Emergencies: Use Social Media
- No Time Like the Present: Disaster Planning Helps Your Nonprofit and Community
- TechSoup Nonprofit Disaster Preparedness Workshop | Photo Blog
- If you would like to have a workshop in your community, reach out via email – the workshop could be done via video conferencing, but I have to admit, having the workshop in person really helps the information stick. Thanks again to the Center for Disaster Philanthropy for funding the coursework, and TechSoup for serving as the organizing hub.
- How Your Nonprofit Fundraising Team Can Prepare for a Disaster
- TechSoup Nonprofit Disaster Planning and Recovery Resources
Our TechSoup disaster planning course covers a lot more than just social media. Document storage, how to outfit your office, creating a contact “tree” for communications, establishing leadership (and backup leadership) for key operational areas, and being prepared in advance to raise funding online while also ensuring a credible online presence are just a few of the topics included.
In closing, I also want to mention that as much as we like to complain about social media, don’t forget the many invaluable ways it can help in emergency situations. Social media can help us find food and shelter, find and check-in on loved ones, learn what emergency personnel are doing at any given time, help emergency personnel find us, report on our status to concerned constituents, learn the latest weather forecast, and more. As I said in that original post – and it is still true today – use social media in emergencies.
Here’s wishing you and yours a happy and safe holiday season!