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September 10, 2017


Amazing help the Red Cross provides. Expect HH was able to share a lot of really valuable information with the volunteers. Thanks for sharing some of the specifics. They get right to the nitty gritty of aiding individuals with daily life which makes a real immediate difference.

No doubt there's lots of coordination between and among the many groups helping that the Red Cross may be called upon to become involved with as they support one another. I can imagine the whole situation could easily become one big confusing disorganized operation. In addition to Red Cross, reports described various groups coming to help from around the country. Our local news aired video with a story about a group of about 90 L. A. firefighters seen in trucks driving down a Florida fwy. Seems they had been in Houston, were heading home to L.A., got as far as New Mexico, then they turned around and headed east days before Irma and arrived in time to be ready for whatever happened. Expect Red Cross will need to be around long after early responders complete their efforts.

Joared--As you noted, coordination is the name of the game in disaster response. Although I no longer go on assignment outside the Kansas/Nebraska/SW Iowa Region, my assignment has always been as a liaison to FEMA, State, Tribal, or Local governments - usually in an emergency operation center. This means that I am, generally, far removed (perhaps by one or two states!) from the scene of the disaster, assuring that other organizations (health departments, school boards, fire & police departments, The Salvation Army, Army Corps of Engineers, Army/Air National Guard, etc) know what the Red Cross is doing/planning and that the Red Cross operations people (Hunky Husband is a disaster response director when he goes out, so that would be him and his management people) know what the others are doing/planning and helpful information such as road closures, etc. The people who actually work with the victims of disaster use the information to help them give efficient, useful services. (Of course, "efficient" is a relative term. Little is truly efficient in a disaster operation because of all of the unknowns and rapidly changing conditions.)

Of course, every disaster worker is actually a liaison - working with people from other organizations and passing the information back to HQ to help the whole team.

NPR had a little piece, this morning, where a power lineman from Detroit was being thanked by Floridians for his help. (They welcomed the news that he thought they would have power by sometime, tomorrow, too!)

Disasters truly do bring out the best - in most people.

The disaster is unfathomable. I can't get my head around it at all. And it will go on and on. I can not see anything but services being overwhelmed if there is not sufficient coordination of various relief efforts.
But I'm sure you're thinking about this, too.

That article is so cool - and timely (as was the traiing). So much has to go on for a disaster recovery that I can't even imagine what the first step is (actually, the first step is probably to break it all down into small segments so everyone isn't overwhelmed - but you know what I mean). Thank goodness for the volunteers that drop everything and go out to help while living in no better conditions than those they are helping!

NH has sent linemen and tree workers, along with money and supplies. Our shelters have taken in many animals from Texas and Florida shelters/Humane Societies, freeing up space so those organizations could hold affected people's pets. It is so heart-warming to see what even far away states/people contribute.

I have marveled at videos on FB that show people on horses helping out trapped horses and other livestock, herding ranging horses and cattle to high ground etc. And then there is the redneck brigade boating out people and their companion animals.

In short, I am in awe at the way everyone comes together in times of need.

Marianna--You think "The disaster is unfathomable." while I think that your medical situation is unfathomable - and - that your thinking of others during this time is unfathomable. People do what needs to be done. Thanks for thinking of others than yourself!

Bogie--Your dad spends an inordinate amount of time keeping up on the latest in the ways that the organization does things - and on the specifics of large disaster response operations throughout the USA. Although it isn't at all likely he would be called upon to direct one of the humongous disaster responses (Harvey or Irma, say), anything less is fair grist for his capabilities. Unfortunately, just now, he is sticking close to home (close enough that he would drive, not fly, to the operation) so that he wouldn't be faced with handling heavy luggage. He still feels weak in his lower torso from the hernia operation.

I had heard NH activities on Harvey and Irma, but failed to mention them to you. People/animal facilities in many states (including Kansas) are taking in animals, just as are the good people of NH. One of the veterinarians in Wichita, with whom I have worked on a local tornado disaster recovery, is taking in some animals. You and she would get along great!

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