Social cohesion is an essential ingredient of any community’s ability to meet its disaster goals. There is no better way to build that connection at the block level than by hosting a block party. The NEN uses the Neighborfest Program to help residents build high-performing teams of volunteers who come together to both craft and implement plans that bring their neighbors together to feed/care for themselves before, during and after a disaster.
This initiative builds on the momentum of Neighborfest by converting the host into a year round advocate for preparedness amongst his/her neighbors as well as a become a powerful resource to the their community and City during times of stress, by managing/triaging the condition of their block and providing valuable data to the agencies committed to their success.
Building on the momentum of the HUB program’s deployment in twelve communities, a cross-sector working group comprised of the Red Cross, Human Services Agency and The Salvation Army, has crafted a community preparedness strategy for vulnerable residents (i.e. seniors, people with access & functional needs, people living with chronic conditions, infants and children).
The NEN partners with a group of great organizations such as The Stanford d.school and the Urban Permaculture Institute of San Francisco to convene a cohort of design professionals from across all sectors. We’ve created a “toolkit” for residents that gives them a road map to configure their homes and backyards so they can shelter in place for up to two weeks after a major event.