CLEARWATER, FL: Hurricane Ian has devastated countless communities with storm surge and high winds on the coast and unexpected flooding inland. Images on the news bring the extent of the damage into our living rooms, leaving nonprofits in other areas wondering, “What would I do in this situation?” Disaster Planning for Nonprofits, offered by the Nonprofit Learning Center, offers an answer. It’s a step-by-step emergency preparedness program that walks nonprofits through the process of creating a Continuity of Operations Plan, also known as a COOP.
“Emergency preparedness is overwhelming. People don’t start, because they don’t know where to start,” says Meps Schulte of the Nonprofit Learning Center. “That’s why we’ve made Disaster Planning for Nonprofits completely free through the end of October.”
Co-authored by Nancy Bacon and Ms. Schulte, Disaster Planning for Nonprofits recognizes that every organization is different, and the challenges they face are different. There’s no such thing as an off-the-shelf disaster plan, so nonprofits need a process for creating a customized plan, with easy-to-manage, bite-sized steps. Nonprofit leaders living in communities affected by wildfires, tsunamis, and hurricanes advised the project. The resource is already being used by nonprofits in Washington State and Oregon through partnerships with NPIP and the Nonprofit Association of Oregon.
Program features include:
A colorful guidebook with prompts and space to write next steps
A set of Excel- and Word-based tools and templates to capture lists and inventories
5 short explainer videos
A certificate of completion to share with funders, insurance companies, and community members
An online community for discussions about emergency preparedness
Disaster Planning for Nonprofits is available on the Nonprofit Learning Center (http://nonprofitlearning.center), a new online platform offering action-oriented training for the nonprofit sector. Enrollment is free through October 31.