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April 12, 2023 News

April 2023 Vestry Papers: Disaster Preparedness

Dear Friends,

As individuals and communities, the best way we can tackle disasters is by being prepared. This may mean working with lay leaders to better understand our physical surroundings, like church and school buildings, so we can protect our communities. It could also mean taking a CPR class to be able to come to the aid of an individual in a situation where every minute matters. We can also prepare emotionally, by trying our best to navigate difficult situations with strength, and even hope, knowing that God has promised to be our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in times of trouble. In this issue, hear from communities and individuals who share stories of preparation, care and hope.

What brings hope in the face of tragedy? In In Misfortune, We are One, Bernadette Williams describes the sense of unity that brought the Haitian people together after two disastrous hurricanes, and the music ministry that rose up in response bringing hope and joy. This article is available in English and Spanish.

Schools in our communities require a specific and focused disaster preparedness and recovery plan to ensure the safety of all involved. In Disaster Preparedness Takes Planning, Frances “Boo” Kay shares the preparations that can be made before an event, and ways to plan for recovery as well.

CPR training is a life-skill and a gift that any of us could be called to offer at any time. In Staying Alive, Jen Adams shares how the members and staff of Grace Episcopal Church in Holland, Michigan prioritized this life-saving learning to be there for their community and each other.

In Security Planning for Your Faith Community, Mark Stevens details a program he created that can help a church conduct an initial hazard assessment specific to its activities and location, develop an emergency action plan based on the assessment and establish training and education programs.

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Charis Bhagianathan
Editor, ECF Vital Practices

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