Community recovery and economic development are core elements of a successful disaster response and recovery strategy. For many communities who have been hit by a major disaster, a return to normalcy for their community has taken between 5 to 7 years.
Community recovery encompasses all facets of disaster recovery and includes:
- assessing the damage,
- gathering and tracking data,
- establishing systems and protocols,
- organizing volunteers,
- applying for federal, state and local aid,
- mobilizing and/or establishing local VOADVoluntary Organizations Active in Disaster’s and Long Term Recovery Groups,
- rebuilding infrastructure (roads, bridges, power lines, water and sanitation facilities, etc.),
- cleaning up environmental damage,
- rebuilding schools, hospitals, and other public and private buildings,
- rebuilding private single and multi-family homes and rental properties,
- establishing community and small business loan programs,
- supporting and promoting mental health and wellness programs,
- establishing and funding grant programs to support 5 to 7 years of recovery efforts.
Advance planning and preparation are essential for communities to recover quickly and efficiently.
Philanthropic leaders can play an important role in convening stakeholders and creating an environment that supports collaboration, transparency and accountability.