Humboldt County can experience numerous types of natural disasters, including earthquakes, tsunamis, floods and fires. As first responders, state, county and city emergency personnel are poised to respond all over the county to such events. However, their supplies, equipment and staffing may be severely limited to respond to all emergency situations based on the scope, nature and location of the disaster. That’s where Humboldt County VOAD, Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster, comes into play. Food for People has been an active member since it’s inception in 1992.
The main goals of VOAD are communication and sharing of information among governmental agencies and volunteer organizations; providing unified and clear messages to the public; collaboration to achieve specific goals without redundancy and duplication of efforts; and cooperation with other VOAD members as partners that could assist one another by sharing resources and personnel. VOAD members provide a forum where organizations can share knowledge and resources throughout the disaster cycle, from preparation to response to overall recovery of their communities.
In the event of a disaster, Food for People will take a leading role in the procurement, storage and distribution of food in affected areas around Humboldt County. Through partnership with other local nonprofit organizations, and with the assistance of the Humboldt County Office of Emergency Services (HCOES), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), American Red Cross and Feeding America (the organization that governs food banks nationwide), Food for People will be responsible for obtaining and directing food resources countywide. In addition, we will provide a facility where donations of food and funds can be collected, sorted and disseminated appropriately.
Above: Food for People responds for inland wildfire evacuees temporarily housed in a hotel on the coast.