March 2020
What is V.O.A.D.??
V. – Volunteer
O. – Organizations
A. – Active in
D. – Disaster

Did you know that many counties in the state have a VOAD or a COAD (Collaborative Organizations Active in Disaster)? You can find the VOAD active in your community at CalVOAD.org . You may discover that your local church or association is represented on your VOAD.

This speaks to the heart of CSBCDR Community Disaster Ministry – building relationships with other organizations dedicated to making their community as prepared as possible for the next catastrophe – BEFORE the disaster actually strikes! 
Naomi's Notes: Chaplains and VOADs
California Southern Baptist Disaster Relief Chaplains have been active participants in the Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters from the community level to the national level, representing the interests of Southern Baptist Chaplains through almost every kind of disaster and crisis imaginable. We have influenced standards, expectations, and competencies for all spiritual care providers across the nation.

In 2006 the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster’s Emotional and Spiritual Care committee published “Light Our Way” (2 nd Ed. in 2018) to inform, encourage and affirm those who respond to disasters and to encourage standards insuring those affected by disaster receive appropriate and respectful spiritual care services. As a natural next step following the publication of Light Our Way and in the spirit of the National VOAD “Four C’s,” cooperation, communication, coordination, and collaboration, the Emotional & Spiritual Care Points of Consensus were ratified and Southern Baptist Disaster Relief agreed to abide by these basic principles for providing appropriate spiritual care.

Some of our chaplains also partner within other National VOAD organizations as providers, trainers, consultants, and subject matter experts. And did you know that some of our California Disaster Relief Regional Lead Chaplains also represent CSBCDR on local VOADs? The CSBCDR Director has approved some of our California DR Chaplains to attend local VOAD meetings and have a “front row seat” on local information and developments.

Get familiar with the National VOAD documents that provide guidance on the “how” you do disaster spiritual care in the field while on deployments.
Naomi Paget
 Director/Instructor, CSBCDR Chaplain Program
Bahamas Deployment
8 California DR team members deployed to Freeport, Grand Bahamas for 5 days last month. This was a cleanup effort in response to Hurricane Dorian in that region.  Caravel Zion Baptist Church housed the team.

In addition to doing some repairs to the church, the team removed, patched and re-roofed 2 houses, and did plumbing, electrical and carpentry jobs. The team was also able to attend Wednesday night prayer meeting. Thank you, team, for sharing your skills and the love of Jesus! 
Photos by/courtesy of Jay York
Family Preparedness
We interrupt this program…”

The family preparedness column this month was going to be on the “Go Bag” – what you would keep in a small bag or backpack by the door in the event you and your family needed to evacuate. We are going to cover that in the April edition. 

Instead, in keeping with the theme of this month – VOAD and how to get involved… Did you know that most counties in California have an emergency alert system? In Los Angeles, it is called “Shake LA,” in Orange County it is called “Alert OC.” There is “Ready Kern” in Kern County and “CodeRED” in Amador County. These and other systems around the state provide citizens critical information related to evacuations, road closures, shelters, fire alerts, power outages. 

TIP OF THE MONTH:
Enroll yourself and family members in your county's emergency alert system   

Google your county today and sign up for these important updates to come directly to your mobile phone.  

Next month’s tip: The GO Bag
VOAD Participation - Collaboration is Key
There’s somethin’ strange in the neighborhood… Who you gonna call?
(To be read to the tune of Ghostbusters)

When something problematic happens in any city or county of our State, there is a well coordinated system of people and agencies trained and in place to respond (see this month’s Lessons Learned). One important facet of that system is the Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD). They can be labeled different things COAD, ENLA, etc., but many Counties have one. When disaster strikes, the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) doesn’t engage directly with California Southern Baptist Disaster Relief, it coordinates volunteer services with local VOADs. If there is representation for CSBCDR in the VOAD, we can assist by bringing our resources to the table to help with the response. If there is no representation, the opportunity comes much later, if at all, and the request will usually be smaller in scale.

Two adages come to mind. “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” If they don’t know about us, if they don’t know who to call, if they have no idea what we can bring to the table, why would they call? The other is “90% of success is just showing up.” Being involved with a VOAD takes commitment. There are typically meetings every other month that run a couple of hours. There may be a drill. There may be training available . There may be a committee to sit on. You might be interested in any or all of that. But what is needed most is CSBCDR representation, someone to tell our story… someone to show up. It is useful to our statewide communication for our CSBCDR team members (approved by the State Director to represent CSBCDR) to have a seat at the table.
Do you currently meet with your VOAD? We are building a list of CSBCDR members who participate in their local VOAD. It’s important to know where we have DR team members, and more importantly, where we don’t. If you regularly meet with your local VOAD, please send the following information to jbauer@csbc.com :
  • Name
  • Address
  • Mobile phone number
  • Email address
  • Name of VOAD
  • Organization you represent
  • Role or position you have with your VOAD
Lessons Learned: Rehearsing Disaster Scenarios
A CSBCDR volunteer participates in a local VOAD. Recently there was a practice exercise that required the participation of all the county agencies working in concert with each other to successfully respond to that “disaster.” 

This is an account of that volunteer’s participation in the exercise.

The scenario: At 7 AM a simulated 6.7 earthquake occurs in Fremont and causes minor to moderate damage to buildings and infrastructure. Multiple fires rage unchecked, gas and water pipelines rupture throughout the area, and portions of I-580, 680 and 880 are closed or damaged. Electricity initially knocked out is restored quickly. Fremont is hardest hit, but water throughout the county is impacted. Thousands are trapped on freeways, and families are separated as the event occurs after many school age children were dropped off by their parents on the way to work.

As the VOAD liaison, they report directly to the County Sheriffs. The EOC (Emergency Operations Center) is fully staffed with representatives of all entities (water, transportation, law enforcement, hospitals, city managers, State EOC, FEMA, schools, Red Cross, etc.), and they are able to watch the process for prioritizing needs, needs assessments and exactly where the VOAD organizations fall into that process. Here is how it goes:
  1. If the disaster is large scale, the VOAD will be activated and report to the EOC.
  2. The VOAD puts their organizations on alert and asks each organization to provide a resource list and time frame in which those resources will be available.
  3. Once city/county resources are spent, then the call for support from VOAD is issued. It is understood by everyone that this resource exhaustion happens quickly. Also, in an effort to control costs, the county has identified many areas that volunteers can be used to staff commodity PODs (Points of Distribution) handing out bottles water, blankets or MREs (Meals Ready to Eat), traffic control, documentation of damage (sometimes they need people to go out and take photos to help assess and prioritize needs). These volunteer hours and equipment are beneficial to the county as they don't cost the county money.
  4. City managers and Emergency Operations staff make the call to the Incident Commander for assistance who then comes to the VOAD.
  5. Approved VOAD organizations are mobilized first. In fact, organizations that are not VOAD-approved have to be approved by the Director of Emergency Services. In a real world situation, that will be hard to get done on the fly. The known entities like Salvation Army, United Way and SBC Disaster Relief will be used first. Other organizations will have to wait. The opportunity to step in when there is a large scale disaster is really dependent on being a regular participating member of the VOAD before it happens.

The result and benefit of this person’s participation in the VOAD:

CSBCDR was called upon to help feed and provide emotional care for 3 homes for the aged, set up the shower trailer for fire fighters, and request the rapid response kitchen ASAP with the mass feeding kitchen to be deployed in the next 48 hours. In the words of the volunteer, “We have much opportunity here, and I think we can position CSBCDR to be a major provider to help people, and in the process, do some major groundwork for kingdom building.”

When disaster strikes, the abundant resources CSBCDR has (as well as the amazing volunteers we have on the roster) can be utilized as quickly and as efficiently as possible. But that can only happen if the local VOAD knows that those resources exist. This is a critical link in the disaster relief chain that DR team members fulfill when they are approved by the CSBCDR Director to represent DR on a VOAD.

“...make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.”  Philippians 2:2
Stories From the Field - My Big Adventure
My big adventure began with a phone call from my friend inviting me to lunch to meet someone who was involved in disaster response. Never one to turn down an invitation to eat out I said “yes” and that’s how my VOAD (Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster) involvement began. Lunch was with the CEO of our local Red Cross, and in the course of the conversation she invited me to attend the next VOAD meeting with her. I told her I had no idea what VOAD was or what it did. She eagerly began to educate me on this important organization that spans across the disaster response arena... and so it began.

VOAD introduced me to people from other faith-based groups, private companies and government agencies. The purpose is to work collaboratively with others in meeting needs during and after a disaster. VOAD’s purpose is to collaborate, communicate, cooperate and coordinate with other disaster response groups so it was a great learning tool for me. It also benefits CSBCDR because it educates people on the level of training and experience we bring to disaster response.

One of the biggest benefits is the contacts it gives us with other businesses and people who help during disasters. During the North Bay fires in 2017, CSBCDR was asked to set up our kitchen and help with feeding. I couldn’t find trailers to store our food products onsite so I contacted one of our VOAD partners who is a representative for the local teamsters union and knows everybody with a truck. Soon trucks were rolling and we had the trailers we needed… and more!

It also helps CSBCDR stay current with changes happening in disaster response. We’ve all seen how response has changed in many areas because of more government involvement. As a part of VOAD I’ve had opportunities to meet people from state and local government agencies which allowed CSBCDR to be more nimble in responding to needs during a disaster. The training events offered helped build my skills and knowledge for responding effectively during disasters. It’s a privilege to represent CSBCDR to this organization.
Dawn Dwyer

“Conduct yourselves with wisdom toward outsiders, making the most of the opportunity.
Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that
you will know how you should respond to each person.” Colossians 4:56
DR Calendar
Disaster Relief Chainsaw Training
4/20-21 Paradise, CA 
Note: This is for New Volunteers ($35) as well as those who need recertification ($20) or want additional training (N/C). See all 3 options on the registration form. The deployment following training has a separate process as listed below.

Disaster Relief Chainsaw Deployment
4/22-5/1 Paradise, CA     
Email DeployDR@csbc.com with:
  • Name
  • Email Address
  • Mobile Phone Number
  • Badge Expiration Date
  • Dates You Are Available

Disaster Relief Ministry Training
6/20 Rohnert Park, CA    (new class – info and registration coming soon!)
 
Operational Stress First Aid (OSFA) *
8/15 Ontario, CA
9/5 TBD Northern CA 

Courses Sponsored by K-LOVE, taught by Naomi Paget:
 
CISM: Stress Management for Trauma Provider COVID-19 CANCELLED
3/17-18 Vacaville, CA

Cultural Diversity in Crisis COVID-19 CANCELLED
3/19-20 Vacaville, CA

CISM: Strategic Response to Crisis
8/13-14 Ontario, CA 

CISM: Advanced Group Crisis Intervention
8/11-12 Ontario, CA 
10/8-9 San Pedro, CA
 
CISM: Spiritual Psychological First Aid (TSA and ICISF)
9/1-2 Concord, CA

CISM: Advanced Individual Crisis Intervention
10/6-7 San Pedro, CA

Courses Sponsored by K-LOVE, taught by KC Petersen:

CISM: Individual & Group Crisis Intervention in 3 Days (GRIN) *
8/11-13 Ontario, CA

*Meets requirement for NAMB DR Chaplain

Help us with DRone!

Please don’t be shy! DRone needs your stories, your photos and your experiences. This is a newsletter for us all, and benefits from your perspectives and input. 

Please consider sending your stories, articles, thoughts, suggestions and LOTS OF PHOTOS to Jayne Bauer at jbauer@csbc.com. This is an ‘all-skate’ – one for all and all for one! Won’t you join with us?!
Disaster Relief Contributions are gratefully accepted and help underwrite CSBC's current or future response to hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, etc., in California, nearby states or mission partnership countries.

Response services include the preparation of hot meals for disaster victims who are without basic utility services, recovery assistance to victims without insurance resources, cleanup of homes, and transportation for volunteers to affected areas.
Please share this newsletter with your friends and churches - help spread the word about CSBC Disaster Relief work in California!
DRone is a monthly publication of California Southern Baptist Convention Disaster Relief to inform and encourage DR team members and friends as we serve together to bring help, hope and healing to a hurting world during a time of crisis. Questions/comments about DRone should be directed to Jayne McClung Bauer, jbauer@csbc.com.

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DR Director: Mike Bivins, 916-673-7622
Editor: Jayne McClung Bauer, DR Communications Coordinator, 707-689-4501
Contributors: Dawn Dwyer, Dawn Fulkerson, Laura Johnson, Neils Johnson, Jay York