HANDS

Safety & Wellbeing

This is a primary “roll up your sleeves” intervention with a focus on meeting the essential needs of people impacted by disaster. Having their basic needs met will support people’s immediate safety and wellbeing and help get them started on the recovery pathway.

These immediate needs include

Housing and adequate shelter from the elements

This is a fundamental need. People who are displaced from their homes urgently need a place to shelter and to feel safe. Things to consider:

Access – people often need to stay located close to their community networks and connections

Access – do people have mobility and other specific requirements for their housing/accommodation

The financial impacts of needing to find rental accommodation in an impacted rental housing sector

Information

When disaster strikes, people need immediate access to factual, credible and up-to-date information. This information is important to keep people updated on the progress of each phase of recovery and any grants and other types of financial assistance that will be made available to impacted households. Things to consider:

People’s capacity to access information may be impacted (i.e. loss of phones, electricity/internet, loss of computers)

People’s capacity to engage with and retain information can be compromised due to high levels of trauma, stress, cognitive overload

Information needs to be credible, up-to-date, accurate and simple with key recovery messages repeated as often as needed.

Resources

Look to local and outside welfare agencies to link people to the resources they will need in the first hours, days and weeks of recovery (i.e. Salvation Army, Red Cross, local welfare sector).

These resources may include:

Tier 1

Healthy food, access to clean water and washing facilities

Bankets, bedding, clothing, toiletries

Medical needs and disability/mobility aid

Cooking facilities and utensils

Tier 2

Access to transport and transportation

Access to financial grants and assistance

Furniture, white goods, mobile phones