New Technology Helps Your Community Prepare for the Next Disaster
Recovers was developed by Caitria O'Neill, in response to her frustrations with matching volunteers with those in need in the aftermath of a tornado striking her hometown of Monson, Massachusetts. Launched in April, after "a four-month stint in Code for America's accelerator for civic startups," Recovers provides software, training, and support to communities for disaster preparation.
Localities that sign up for a Recovers subscription, are "given a personalized site (townname.recovers.org) and access to a web and mobile platform that allows them to match up donations and volunteers to the people and places that are in need. When parts of a community lack power and Internet, canvassers can be sent out to those locations to record requests via iPhone or paper. Recovers is working with Captricity, another Code for America startup, to make digitally recording these needs easier," says Schwartz.
"For example, Recovers launched a site for New York City's Lower East Side after Hurricane Sandy hit. If the disaster relief movement--largely organized by members of Occupy Wall Street--had signed on before the hurricane hit, leaders would have had much more time to learn the Recovers system and think about what they might need post-Sandy. O'Neill explains: 'I have not put down my email since 4:30 this morning. It's unsustainable.'"