Kicking Off 2019
The college football championship game is just around the corner – and many of us are eagerly counting the days.
The funny thing about football is, even though there are always numerous players on the field, some only get air time if something really bad like a penalty or missed block has occurred. I’m talking of course about offensive linemen. (And if you don’t believe me, go back and watch the final moments of the second half of the Alabama-Oklahoma game.)
Here at ALAN we can relate, because even though we’re busy year-round, you usually only hear our name when bad things like hurricanes are happening. But in reality, we’re just as busy when the spotlight isn’t on us.
That’s why I’d like to share the following Q&A with you. It’ll catch you up on what we’ve been up to since Hurricane Season 2018 ended – and share how we’ll continue to work hard to bring our A-game to disaster-impacted areas in the year ahead.
Whether you’re cheering for the Crimson Tide or the Clemson Tigers, I hope you have a wonderful game-watching experience. And as we “kick off” for 2019, I’m sending along my best for a safe, sunny and uneventful year for us all.
All About ALAN
What kinds of relief activities has ALAN been involved in since 2018’s hurricane season ended?
Although ALAN is most closely associated with hurricanes, they’re just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the disasters we support. For example, we’ve spent considerable time fielding requests to support the California fires – and been in touch with officials in Alaska to ensure they have ample logistics support after the recent earthquakes. We’ve also been on alert for any work our U.S.-based partners may undertake for the Sunda Strait tsunami. Meanwhile, we are still helping various relief organizations deal with the aftermath of Hurricanes Michael and Florence – and even for Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, because as we have frequently written, hurricane recovery is a long and involved journey.
Space doesn’t permit us to list every request we’ve fulfilled – or thank every individual company that has stepped up to the plate to provide the space, services and equipment that were needed. But suffice it to say, when our non-profit partners asked for assistance, we were able to deliver time and time again thanks to amazing logistics partners like you.
How does ALAN work with non-profit and government partners during the “non-hurricane” season ?
As any good business knows, there’s no substitute for healthy relationships and solid lines of communication. That’s why we are constantly meeting with as many of our humanitarian and government partners as possible to assess what they might need when disasters strike. This includes procuring and reviewing detailed disaster plans so that we can better mobilize to help when the worst occurs.
We’re also taking the lead on private sector logistics and supply chain participation for this year’s national disaster exercise, “Shaken Fury.” In February, we’ll host a conversation with businesses on how to participate in the exercise and to help craft some of the possible activities. If you’d like more information on this event, please contact us at [email protected].
Has ALAN made any recent notable changes?
Last summer, we launched a new-and-improved version of our official website, www.alanaid.org. We think you’ll find it to be far more user-friendly and informative than its predecessor, and we encourage you to access it often for the latest news and updates.
In a similar vein, we’ve been working on building out our technical capability. In fact, this spring, we’ll unveil an interactive disaster relief map that will allow you to track everything from the current disasters ALAN is supporting to the latest requests for assistance we’ve received. While this map will not serve as a substitute for the many individual calls for help that have become our trademark, it will serve as an important means of keeping everyone in the loop and calling your attention to various opportunities to use your space, services, equipment or expertise for the greater good. Once it goes live, you’ll be able to access it on our website, so stay tuned.
How can we help ALAN with its efforts?
There are myriad ways you can help ALAN – and all of them are appreciated. These include:
- Visiting our micro-site (https://www.alanaid.org/operations/) to view the latest requests for equipment, space or services – and offering to help us fulfill one or more of them.
- Making a monetary donation. Any amount, large or small, plays a key role in funding our efforts and enables us to continue doing the good work that we do.
- Sending a diecast 1:64 version of your logistics or trucking company’s vehicle to the logistics Haul of Fame, a newly formed museum in Chattanooga, TN. For every original diecast truck this museum receives, it will donate $50 to ALAN, and it has promised to continue making these donations up to $50,000. (Contact us if you have a diecast truck to donate, and we will get you to the right source.)
- Visiting our website to fill out a form and pre-volunteering your equipment, space or services. We find such pre-offers to be hugely helpful, and you never know when one of the offers you’re making will be just what is needed.
What can our organization expect to see/hear from ALAN if a serious disaster hits?
Should a serious disaster strike, we’ll do our best to reach out to you via a variety of channels, including updating our disaster micro-site, sending out periodic e-mails and ensuring we stay up-to-date with social media posts and web site messaging. We’ll also work closely with our media and association partners to get the word out via their web sites.
Is there anything else we should know?
Hopefully all of these things will do a thorough job of keeping you in the know and in the loop. However don’t hesitate to reach out to us at [email protected] if you have a question, suggestion or concern. We are always happy to hear from you and to be of help where we can.