Documents Released on the 2015 CTP: A Living Mosaic, the Disaster Risk Reduction Ambassador Curriculum and the Lessons Learned Report

The Natural Hazard Mitigation Association is extremely proud to announce the release of three vitally important and much needed documents concerning Disaster Risk Reduction. The documents are:

  1. The Disaster Risk Reduction Ambassador Curriculum;
  2. A Living Mosaic: A Path Forward; and
  3. Lessons Learned.

These materials are designed to introduce concepts and products into the marketplace of ideas to emphasize the need to include Disaster Risk Reduction in any concept of: Resilience, Sustainability, Floodplain Management, Climate Adaptation, Hazard Mitigation, Planning, Engineering and Development or Community Development.

  1. Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Curriculum

We believe that resilience and sustainability must always include Disaster Risk Reduction as a primary goal. Therefore, with the financial support of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Natural Hazard Mitigation Association (NHMA) has developed a curriculum for people and communities interested in learning about DRR as an element of a better and more resilient future for their community.

This curriculum was developed based on the knowledge of our volunteers, the results of a detailed survey of over 50 national thought leaders, and informed by the successes of the Resilient Neighbors Network.

This curriculum is designed to fill the gaps in other programs of training so that true disaster risk reduction can be achieved.  As we designed the curriculum, we moved well beyond “rounding up the usual suspects” in order to listen to a wide variety of experts in the fields of Resilience, Floodplain Management, Hazard Mitigation, and Climate Adaptation. We carefully analyzed the thoughts of those experts; researched what was available in the arena of Disaster Risk Reduction; and then developed a curriculum designed to meet most of those needs and gaps. Further refinement and expansion of this curriculum will be an ongoing effort for future years.

NHMA has thus significantly enhanced our nation’s knowledge base about how to achieve Disaster Risk Reduction for the Whole Community. We intend to vigorously work to make this practical Disaster Risk Reduction knowledge widely available to the Floodplain Management, Climate Adaptation, Hazard Mitigation, and Emergency Management Communities.

This year, NHMA is working with the Resilient Neighbors Network (RNN) and others, to refine and build upon the FY 2014 FEMA-funded effort, in order to work together to further grow and share information about the value of peer-to-peer knowledge-sharing in an effort to aid Disaster Risk Reduction.

This curriculum is designed to build a strong legal, ethical, and equitable basis of safe and effective development, redevelopment, and adaptation. The curriculum modules and study plans are custom-tailored and updated for local needs to facilitate community progress.

This curriculum is still being developed and we welcome comments on further improvement at: nathazma@gmail.com

  1. A Living Mosaic: A Path Forward

How can we protect people from foreseeable natural disasters?

A Living Mosaic: A Path Forward is, so far as we know, the only document providing a clear explanation designed to help ordinary people navigate through the well intentioned, costly but bewildering maze of federal, charitable organization, non-profit, local, state, and other programs available to help reduce the misery, suffering, environmental despoliation and cost caused by foreseeable natural events impacting the human-built environment.

The document provides practical solutions, approaches, applications, and resources to aid people before, during and after a natural disaster.

Experts predict that exposure to natural disasters will greatly increase in the United States and throughout the world during this century. Long-term weather trends indicate that many parts of the nation will see more dramatic weather patterns, exposing residents to far greater risks than in the past; while at the same time more people are moving into the areas most at risk of flood, wildfire, earthquake and other natural hazards. This document is designed to reduce the risks and consequences of inevitable and foreseeable natural processes on human occupancy of hazardous areas.

A Living Mosaic will always be a work in progress, and we welcome comments and thoughts for further improvement at: nathazma@gmail.com

  1. Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned is a compilation of 50+ interviews with these communities on how Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) can be implemented at a local level. The interview process created an opportunity to discuss and review what is working and not working in various communities. The interviews included RNN communities, communities identified through partner organizations, chief resilience officers, and individuals from climate science and mitigation. Research and documentation includes a review of materials used on the positioning of government, businesses, non-profits and individuals on how to prepare for disasters, both pre and post disaster.

These interviews formed the basis of the Disaster Risk Reduction Ambassador Curriculum and influenced the development of A Living Mosaic.

In an effort to help local leaders prepare their communities for such events, the Natural Hazard Mitigation Association (NHMA) developed the Resilient Neighbors Network (RNN) across the country. These 12 pilot communities have been actively engaging, learning and sharing best practices with one another over the last two years.