The Disaster Response Committee provides the framework that enables the Disaster Response ministry to function in an effectively and timely fashion.
This committee is responsible for manning the management positions in the ICS structure that manages the disaster response effort in the Disaster Response Center. In addition, a small executive group should be formed and empowered to make decisions, especially on release of funds up to a certain level, without having to poll the full Finance committee, Trustees and Church Council.
The team’s purpose is to set policy and monitor progress as it supervises and supports operations and provides oversight so that actions taken during a disaster response abide by the rules and procedures of the church.
Stage 1: Planning and Preparation – Before Disaster Strikes
1. Assist in maintaining the disaster response ministry and disaster response plan.
2. Assist in maintaining the Disaster Response Center (DRC) operations location and the team that staffs it. The work area should be flexible to adjust to the number of people mobilized for the DRC staff, and have the necessary communications equipment, maps and charts.
3. Assist in building relationships with agencies active in disaster response in the local area: governmental organizations, volunteer organizations active in disasters, long term recovery organizations, interfaith organizations, etc.
4. Assist in disaster training. This may include identifying training opportunities, helping to host training sessions, serving as a trainer or following up after training events, etc.
Stage 2: Warning – Disaster is Imminent
1. Assist in implementation of the Disaster Preparation and Response Plan.
2. Activate the DRC Team and confirm communications capabilities.
3. Assist in setting up and staffing the DRC and, if the disaster is likely to have a severe adverse impact on the location, assist in setting up and staffing an alternative location to work from.
Stage 3: Emergency Response – After Disaster Strikes
1. Assess damage to your household and check the status of your family. If you are a victim, do not rely solely on your own judgment, listen to others. If you cannot perform your duties, notify the church office and get help.
2. Assume your role in the DRC.
3. Assist the pastors, staff and church office in meeting their needs
Stage 4: Relief
1. Continue to implement the church Disaster Plan.
2. Assess the DRC positions to determine the size of the structure required to continue. Prepare for expansion and obtaining other persons to assist in the functions needed, or for reducing and merging various functions under a single manager.
3. As the relief phase wanes and recovery is about to start, prepare to phase out the DRC and be replaced by a recovery organization.
Stage 5: Long Term Recovery
1. No long-term recovery actions.
2. Review and critique actions taken during disaster. Seek improvement.