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What is VOAD

VOAD means Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster

·         VOAD is an umbrella organization of voluntary, community and faith based organizations

o   Cooperation

o   Collaboration

o   Communication

o   Coordination

o   It is not an operational entity 

·         VOAD is a coordinating body for voluntary non-profit/non-governmental organizations that have the capacity to perform a relief function in the event of a disaster.

·         VOAD encourages collaboration of voluntary agencies to maximize their impact during a disaster and avoid duplication of services. VOADs also:

o   Build relationships before the disaster, through meetings and conferences, with other VOAD organizations, community, and government agencies

o   Share information on what resources an organization can provide

o   Work to develop organizational response plans

o   Provide input for community and government response plans

o   Receive training and participate in exercises

o   Promote individual and organizational preparedness plans

o   Communication link between emergency management and member organizations through liaisons

o   Meet to share information and coordinate activities

o   Coordinate disaster response of member organizations

§  Mass Care: sheltering, feeding, pet care, emotional and spiritual counseling

§  Volunteer Management

§  Donations Management

o   Coordinate short term individual and family assistance provided by member and emerging organizations

o   Case Management: Disaster social service case management & training

o   Advocate and connect to NPO/NGO Disaster Relief

o   Bring faith based organizations to the table

o   Assist with Long Term Recovery Committee Formation

o   Long Term Assistance: House rebuilding, etc.

o   Works closely with local emergency management

o   Assists with disaster response

o   Assist with recovery efforts

Overview of the National VOAD

National VOAD was founded in 1970 in response to the challenges many disaster organizations experienced following Hurricane Camille, which hit the Gulf Coast in August, 1969.

Prior to the founding of National VOAD, numerous organizations served disaster victims independently of one another. These included both government and the private, non-profit sector. As a result, help came to the disaster victim haphazardly as various organizations assisted in specific ways. Unnecessary duplication of effort often occurred, while at the same time, other needs were not met. People who wanted to volunteer to help their neighbours affected by disaster were often frustrated by the variety of organizations in some areas of service and the total lack of opportunities to serve other needs. Further, there was only limited availability of training for potential volunteers. Information for victims on services during disasters was woefully inadequate. Likewise, communication among voluntary disaster agencies was very limited and coordination of services was negligible. In fact, mechanisms for this were non-existent.

The seven founding organizations came together and committed to fostering the four C’s—communication, coordination, collaboration, and cooperation in order to better serve people impacted by disasters. Today, National VOAD is a leader and voice for the non-profit organizations and volunteers that work in all phases of disaster—preparedness, response, relief, recovery, and mitigation. National VOAD is the primary point of contact for voluntary organization in the National Response Coordination Center (at FEMA headquarters) and is a signatory to the National Response Plan.

Overview of the California VOAD

Overview of the Riverside County VOAD