The Emergency Volunteer Corps of Nehalem Bay (EVCNB) has recently been the recipient of a $25,000 sustainability grant.
By Brian Cameron
“We are in process,” said Linda Kozlowski, President of EVCNB. “Currently we have review proposals, we’ve narrowed our consultants list and plan to interview potential candidates in January.”
Kozlowski is referring to a sizeable grant the organization has received form the Oregon Office of Emergency Management (OOEM), as well as the US Department of Homeland Security. The first phase of the grant process involves bringing on a consultant who will aid in the facilitation of the long-term survivability of the EVCNB, and from there the organization moves into a presumed time period of formation as they utilize the monies to help prop up the all-volunteer based group to stay afloat as time moves forward.
The $25,000 grant has been earmarked to act as the sustaining force for the EVCNB in order to help the emergency preparedness organization accomplish their long-term goals and have the funding to do so.
“For ten years we have been planning, organizing and training for the inevitable natural disaster,” said Kozlowski. “And we have been remarkably successful. Hundreds of volunteers have devoted thousands of hours in order to create communities that are resilient and able to survive the kinds of natural disasters we know are possible on the coast.”
Kozlowski lists the various types of disasters that can affect coastal residents as flooding, severe winter storms, landslides and wildfires, as well as large subduction style earthquakes that can generate tsunami in and around the north Oregon coast.
“The EVCNB wants to make sure that a decade of work can be ‘institutionalized’ so that the organization’s knowledge, experience and best practices can be passed on to a new generation of leaders,” said Kozlowski. “All of our efforts continue to expand but we also must be asking just how an all-volunteer organization can stay alive and vital when the founding group moves on? How is all the institutional memory and experience maintained? How can the north coast of Oregon continue to prepare for natural disasters?”
The grant monies awarded by OOEM and DHS are to specifically help answer these questions and with the highest hopes Kozlowski conveys that the organization provides numerous disaster readiness based services to the north Tillamook County areas. Preparedness fairs, guest speakers, demonstrations with creating go-bags, water procurement and disaster sanitation concerns are just a few of the topics the EVCNB have addressed and they are working closely with the communities to be more involved in general disaster readiness.
If its not a tornado, flood or landslide then it could potentially be the earthquake, tsunami or other wide-spread natural disaster, the EVCNB will be in place to help residents and visitors in the event of an emergency.