|Crisis Cleanup has a great logo|
The cliff's notes version is that Crisis Cleanup is a google map populated with cleanup needs represented by pins dropped on the location of said need. Registered organizations can claim pins so that other responding groups don't accidentally send teams to a home that has already received help. There is a reporting aspect that accompanies this so that hours can be tracked and volunteer numbers logged, an innovative solution that helps manage the nonprofit aspect of early recovery cleanup following disasters.
I had an opportunity to be a user of the system after Hurricane Sandy as part of its beta testing during response and saw the potential. Since then the system has been implemented several times with what I hope are fixes and advances making it easier to use and more comprehensive from a data capture perspective.
|Screen shot of the user interface -- Superstorm Sandy|
And while I'm optimistic about how Crisis Cleanup can work to provide the autonomy nonprofits seek while working within a defined system, I feel that it's important to remember the need to be inclusive.
Spontaneous response in disaster and the substantial impact it has during early recovery activities is no longer an ignorable trend. Social media is being used to organize armies of volunteers to aid in response and recovery, and it's happening as I write this in Colorado. As a community of practice we must strive to include as many of these emergent groups as possible in response coordination. Not only is it key in working towards enacting the "all of nation" or "whole of community" approach to preparedness and response as outlined by Presidential Policy Directive 8, but its important for unity of effort to provide better coordinated service delivery to those affected.
As it stands the crisis cleanup tool is largely for vetted organizations, those with a response history or those who are "known" entities. And while I understand why the system is setup this way, to help ensure consistency in the work done on behalf of homeowners, I feel that there is a solution that can set an expectation as to the level of work needing to be done, while encouraging broader inclusion of locally responding groups.
All Disasters Are Local, a tired expression but one that holds truth; and while Crisis Cleanup has taken a monumental step in unifying early recovery cleanup from a nonprofit perspective, I believe that there is work to be done to ensure access to this tool makes its way down to the emergent groups on a local level. For it's those groups that have the biggest stake in ensuring that their communities make a full recovery and as such rightfully deserve to be included within the broader coordinated effort.
A tip of my cap to you Mr. Titus, I look forward to seeing how we can evolve the model moving forward.