How to Help Your Community After a Disaster

How to Help Your Community After a Disaster

Help Your CommunityFor victims of natural disasters: when flood waters have subsided, the tornado has finished turning your hometown into a place nearly unrecognizable, and the blazing fire has been put to rest, it can feel as if all hope is lost. Damaged properties, businesses, homes and possessions can lead to a feeling of helplessness and asking ‘where do I even begin?’

In the event of a disaster, many will be directly affected by the storm, losing basic necessities - their shelter, food and clothing, while others will be lucky enough to have been bypassed. Many resulting stress factors and psychological impacts can last long after a person has weathered the storm. For those that have not been directly hit, there are many tasks to consider doing to help your community and your neighbors get back on their feet again.

Victims of disasters need all the assistance they can get, from something as simple as a toothbrush and blanket, to medical attention, psychological and therapeutic counseling and more. Following a disaster, if you find yourself wanting to help, there are many ways to do so.

  • Donate goods/money
  • Donate blood
  • Open up Wi-Fi power to family/friends/neighbors
    • Following a major disaster, many are left without power. If you are one of the few who has access to electricity and/or Wi-Fi you can share this with your neighbors, friends or family. This can allow them to charge their electronics, and contact others to let them know they are safe
  • Volunteer
    • For search-and-rescue teams
      • Contact your local police or fire departments for further information
    • To cook food at a local shelter
    • For clean-up and reconstruction
    • To support local charities
    • At the State or FEMA response site
  • Help to organize fundraisers/benefits
  • Use social media to begin educational/newsworthy/donation pages
    • Use Facebook to set up a group or disaster page for community members
    • Communicate with community officials to begin a hashtag campaign for the disaster, that way all information ends up under one campaign
  • Plan ahead for the next emergency

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