Tweeting out a disaster preparedness workshop

Thursday, 15 May 2014

For cities and communities, disaster preparedness can make all the difference. On April 30, Twitter and other tech companies, including @yerdle, @myTurn, @BayShare and @WeSupper, were invited to join in the San Francisco Interfaith Council’s 5th Biennial Disaster Preparedness Workshop for Congregations.

The Twitter volunteers live-tweeted the proceedings, giving them a new dimension so that more people might be alerted to the need for preparedness.

Unlike past workshops, which focused on catastrophic disasters, this year’s session explored the faith community’s responsibility in helping those affected by floods, fires and other more common crises. Hence the workshop’s theme: “Congregations Responding to Everyday Disasters.”

We were joined by leaders of many faiths in the Bay Area as well as other tech companies that want to help our community recover from natural (and man-made) disasters when they occur. As you can see from these Tweets, the hashtag #SFICDPW2014 was used to organize the conversation around workshop.

At facilitated group discussions, each table brought up different resources and needs that emerge after a disaster, which were tweeted out by the tech representatives to document the ideas.

@SF_CARD, a group that helps nonprofit and faith-based organizations serve the public during a disaster, guided the discussions about what local congregations can do to train their members to lead an effective and coordinated response to a community disaster.

Michael G. Pappas, executive director of the San Francisco Interfaith Council, said the day accomplished several things: “Not only were we able to capture and aggregate key thoughts being shared during the table-top exercise, but the very presence of our tech colleagues did much in the way of relationship building with the nonprofit sector.”

And we were delighted to be part of it.