Tulane University and New Orleans are all too familiar with the challenges that communities face in the aftermath of disasters. We also know the impact that committed, compassionate volunteers and community members can have on recovery initiatives when they work together towards a common goal. COVID-19 may have changed the way we can engage in these recovery initatives, but not our desire to help. Learn how you can be involved below.
Sending money is almost always the most efficient way to help in a disaster. Consider supporting local organizations as more money goes to supporting those directly affected by disasters.
The Disaster Recovery Timeline
When disaster strikes a community, its impact dominates the news. Images and accounts of distress fill TV screens and airwaves. If the emergency remains in the news for more than a week or two, it seems like long-term coverage. Educating yourself on the different phases of disaster recovery is an important first step in helping. Generally, mass media cover the first phase of a disaster, whereas the long-term disaster-response unfolds over several phases and can last months or even years. The need conitnues long after the media coverage ends and the national attention shifts.
After disasters, non-profit organizations can be overwhelmed by well-meaning donations of clothing, household goods, sports equipment, etc. Listen to the stories of the people on the ground, and direct your giving based on what has been identified as a need. Furthermore during COVID-19, organizations working in disaster-affected areas face additional challenges and new needs. Dale Herzog, Director of Humanitarian Logistic for the UPS Foundation, encourages you to ask three questions:
1. Is this stuff wanted?
2. How will this stuff get there?
3. How will the stuff get distributed after it arrives at its destination?
Tulane Student Resources and Support Services
If you need assistance and are not sure where to begin, please contact the Office of Student Resources and Support Services (SRSS). During business hours you can call (504) 314-2160, e-mail email@example.com. For after-hour support, the Division of Student Affairs provides a 24/7 professional staff on call for urgent situations and can be reached by calling (504) 920-9900.