Resources to support disaster planning are featured along with tools from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that can be used by Community Action Agencies and others to develop effective Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief plans.
The information below features (1) Resources to Support Disaster Planning and (2) Tools from PandemicFlu.Gov that includes a series of checklists that can be used and adapted by CAAs to develop Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief Plans.
Communications, Protection, Readiness (CPR): NPower’s Nonprofit Guide to Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery from NPower – This document is that it is not a test. Rather, it is a tool to be used as a means of assessing your organization’s disaster preparedness on a number of critical fronts. It is a way for you to benchmark your readiness against what could be considered best practice.
These helpful items are available from TechSoup:
- Disaster Planning and Recovery Toolkit – Resources to help you keep disasters from becoming disastrous
- The Resilient Organization: A Guide for Disaster Planning and Recovery Word version (1.3 MB)
- The Resilient Organization: A Guide for Disaster Planning and Recovery PDF version (620 KB)
- Post-Impact Operations Analysis Worksheets (use tabs at bottom of worksheet and see Chapter 9 of the Guide for Disaster Planning and Recovery, pp. 67-77)
- Is Your Organization Prepared for a Disaster? – Samples, templates, and resources to help you create a disaster plan
Continuity of Operation Plan (COOP) for Nonprofit Human Services Providers from the Alliance for Human Services
Disaster Preparedness and Recovery for Community Development Organizations from NeighborWorks® America
Disaster Planning, Emergency Preparedness & Business Continuity from the Nonprofit Coordinating Committee of New York
Getting Ready: Preparing Your Agency for Disaster Response – Workbook Activities from the California/Nevada Community Action Partnership
Mitigation Best Practices Portfolio from FEMA provides examples of activities, projects, and potential funding sources that communities and individuals have implemented to protect both people and property – Best Practices email updates – Emergency Management Guide for Business and Industry.
Ready.Gov features a wide range of items to support emergency planning including:
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has developed a series of checklists that organizations can use to help ensure that adequate Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief plans are instituted at state and local levels. Involvement of Community Action Agencies with state and local emergency preparedness planning is particularly critical to ensure provisions are incorporated to address the needs of low-income communities.
The checklists are part of a web site developed by HHS that focuses on pandemic planning. However, much of the guidance offered can also be applied to other crisis situations that would require emergency response including weather-related events, acts of terrorism, etc. These topics include planning to protect your employees and maintain your agency’s operations, specific measures for child development and preschool programs, planning for individuals and families, and coordinating with other organizations to help your community.
PandemicFlu.gov provides comprehensive government-wide information on pandemic influenza and avian influenza. A pandemic occurs in many localities - perhaps even worldwide - almost simultaneously. PandemicFlu.gov provides a range of information and tools to support State & Local Government Planning and Response Activities with State-by-State Seasonal and Pandemic Flu Resources....State Pandemic Plans....Pandemic Influenza Planning Checklist for Workplace Administrators.
A Faith-Based and Community Organizations Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Checklist is available to enable State CAP Associations and local CAA’s develop measures to protect employees' health and safety and plan for continued operation in a crisis. Elements of the checklist include:
Plan for the impact of a pandemic on your organization and its mission including (a) situations likely to require increasing, decreasing or altering the services your organization delivers, (b) back up plans, cross-train staff in other jobs so that if staff are sick, others are ready to come in to carry on the work, and (c) test your response and preparedness plan using an exercise or drill, and review and revise your plan as needed.
Communicate with and educate your staff, members and persons in the communities you serve
Plan for the impact of a pandemic on your staff, members and communities that you serve
Set up policies to follow during a pandemic
Allocate resources to protect your staff, members and communities that you serve during a pandemic
Coordinate with external organizations and help your community
A Child Care and Preschool Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Checklist is available to assist organizations with child development initiatives. Elements of the checklist include:
Planning and Coordination
Student Learning and Program Operations including ways to help families continue their child's learning if your child care program or preschool is closed and ways to continue basic functions if your program is closed (for example, continue meeting payroll and keeping in touch with staff and student's families).
Infection Control Policies and Actions
Additional resources to support pandemic preparedness efforts:
Guidance for Protecting At-Risk Populations during an Influenza Pandemic, produced by the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO), describes key elements for an effective plan for helping communities before, during, and after a pandemic hits.
See the H1N1 Flu website from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for updated Swine Flu national information. One feature on the website is Seasonal Flu Information for Schools & Childcare Providers.
CAA leadership with effective Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief planning is an element of ROMA National Goal 4: Partnerships Among Supporters and Providers of Services to Low-Income People Are Achieved with a focus on ensuring that a complete continuum of care is instituted for low-income people.
Kenneth Ackerman, Virtual CAP Project Manager