After a disaster strikes, assessment teams work to determine priority needs and connect communities with available resources.
Some factors to consider:
- Are homes damaged?
- Will responding volunteers and organizations need mass feeding support?
- Will the community benefit from chaplain ministry?
- Does the community have sufficient resources to facilitate a full recovery?
Since needs change daily in a disaster response, continued assessment is essential for effective crisis management.
The very nature of a disaster causes the normal chain of available resources to become overwhelmed and outside assistance may be needed. The local Baptist Association may indeed have more needs than can be met or there may be minimal damage to a particular area. It is the role of trained assessment teams to assist in determining the needs of an impacted area and to work with various coordinators to ensure proper resources and volunteers are mobilized to assist. Assessment team members can work to assist local leadership to think through and determine an appropriate response involving local community resources, as well as Alabama Baptist Disaster Relief resources most beneficial for recovery.
It is important to realize that disaster related needs change dramatically from day to day. Assessment is an ongoing task. As identified needs are met, new needs will surface throughout the response effort.