Disasters Happen: Are You Ready?

Disasters Happen: Are You Ready?

by Margaret Dunning of the Diocesan Council

In California the occurrence of a disaster is not a question of if, but of when. Is your church prepared? There are three ministries that you need to consider when planning your disaster response:

·Provide training and resources to church members and their families
·Provide continuity and recovery for church operations
·Provide resources and services to the local community

The Diocesan Emergency Response Team can help provide the training and resources to enable your congregation to develop a comprehensive disaster response plan to address these three areas. We are currently compiling a database of resources, talents, personnel, and assets throughout the diocese. We are also working with Episcopal Relief and Development and many other dioceses and congregations throughout the Episcopal Church to develop preparedness plans which may be tailored to your unique location and congregation. Following a disaster, we will act as liaison between your emergency planning committee, the Office of the Bishop, and Episcopal Relief and Development to insure that you have the support and resources that you need. We are developing a diocesan wide emergency communication system to alert everyone to what is happening and what is needed, to identify needs, and to match resources to those needs.

After the disaster is not the time to get organized! We need to have the plans and training in place before the disaster occurs! We would like each Dean to appoint a representative to the Emergency Response Team and each church to form an emergency planning committee. The deanery representative will be responsible for communicating with the dean and the churches. The emergency planning committees will be responsible for developing the emergency response plan for their church with the assistance of the Diocesan Emergency Response Team. Do not hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns.

Thank you for your attention to this extremely important program.
Margaret Dunning
Diocesan Disaster Coordinator

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