Disaster Relief Solutions


Millions of dollars of donated goods from caring people spanning the globe made their way to Texas as Hurricane Harvey decimated Houston and its surrounding areas. Even as people were still being rescued and the rains were coming down, relief efforts and donations were pouring in from all across the globe. As relief efforts started to materialize, the flaws in our way of dealing with disaster relief began to emerge. As with disaster rescue, the same was true for the relief side of things, we had no plan or system in place to deal with the many tribulations of disaster relief. It is because of these trials and tribulations the community here was born.

Just a few of the problems we experienced and plan on addressing are as follows:

Problem: Coordination.

Experience / Concerns:

  • Knowing what and where supplies and/or manpower were needed was very difficult.

Solutions:

By utilizing the same method of communication and information dispersion that governmental agencies use, the NIMS protocol, a standardized method of responding and communicating during a disaster or emergency, along with a ticketing and queue system combined with heat maps and other organizational technologies, the community at TXDis can keep things flowing smoothly in active disaster relief situations. The strength and congruity of our network allows for more efficient and reliable means of vetting areas and/or people needing assistance.

Problem: Identify Verification.

Experience / Concerns:

  • There were people abusing the gracious gifts of others and taking more than what was needed.
  • People walked off with thousands of dollars worth of gift cards and/or goods after being entrusted to distribute them.


Solutions:

Make everyone validate their accounts with their phone number and possible link to their Facebook account. From the app people can scan another's QR Code and be taken to their profile and see what other donations they've gotten. Possible ID badges. Having a better system to vet and verify donation stewards and donation recipients.

Problem: Lack of Connections.

Experience / Concerns:

  • Finding someone with a certain asset or skill set was very difficult and time consuming.


Solutions: 

Whether you're a boat mechanic or school teacher, have a warehouse, can perform search and rescue or own a bus to transfer people, there is a tag or group for that. Tag yourself which allows others to find you by map and availability.

Problem: No centralized place of information.

Experience / Concerns:

  • There wasn't a place to go to find updated information regarding relief that was moderated, reliable and accurate.
  • No place to reach out to people to ask for help.


Solutions: 

Having a centralized place of accurate and up-to-date information provides the ability to display and alert people to important notices, such as donation sites, shelter, etc.

Disaster Rescue Solutions
 

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Tuesday, 23 April 2019