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Guest For THURSDAY AUGUST 27, 2009
Member: Community Board # 8 - Manhattan
Member: Community Emergency Response Team
A "RUN NYC" Athlete
Producer: Public Access Cable Television
The program can be viewed in its entirety by clicking the you tube link below:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GwFB_3RL3Hc - WILL SANCHEZ
More about: WILL SANCHEZ
"live in a steady joy" from Donald Hall's poem "the happy man"
250 East 65th Street Ap 7D 646.321.6332
Over 30 years experience in account management, solutions development, information technology consulting, and productive software programming. A highly respected account manager who worked with his clients to keep their systems usable and maintainable, and who built exceptional customer loyalty through superior customer relations management. A team-builder adept at leading staff through difficult projects and who thrived on opportunities to inspire people to their best performance.
Community Board 8 of Manhattan, New York – CB#8M 2005 - present
Chair of the Communications Committee of CB#8M 2008 - present
Secretary of CB#8M 2006 - 2008
· Responsible for time-keeping, attendance monitoring, posting, and roll-call for the board.
Chair of the Public Safety Committee of CB#8M 2006 - 2008
· Responsible for revitalizing this important committee.
Hosted informational forums, some televised on MNN, including:
Profsnet.com, Boston, Massachusetts 2001- 2005
Information Technology Recruiter
Pinnacle Decision Systems, Inc., Middletown, Connecticut 1996 - 2000
Sundance Software, New York, New York 1982 - 1995
McCall Pattern Company, New York, New York
Market Analyst/System Support/Consultant
BS in Mathematics (cum laude) from the City College of New York
MS in Applied Mathematics from the Courant Institute of New York University
Windows • MS Office • Information Builders FOCUS • Goldmine • Microsoft Solutions Framework (MSF) • IBM mainframes – CMS and TS
CHARITABLE and VOLUNTEER WORK
VOLUME 10. NO. 2 SPRING 2006
CB8’s SANCHEZ PLAYS MAJOR ROLE IN MOVE TO HELP PREPARE CITY RESIDENTS
“All Together Now” is an inno- vative new program aimed at preparing city dwellers for such unwanted occurrences as power blackouts, hurricanes and terrorist attacks.
“All Together Now” comes at emergency preparedness from a new angle: changing behavior patterns so that people will actually adopt some of the practices being recommended.
David Gershon, the man behind the ATN Program, has been
a leader in developing ways of getting groups to adopt new behavior. One of the keys is understanding how new ideas spread through a population. Initially the target has to be the estimated 15 percent of the population who can be charac-terized as “early adopters:”
people who are eager to try out new things.
One of these “early adopters” or “team leaders,” as they were known, was CB8’s own Will Sanchez. Here is a rundown on his ATN activities from a recent article in HABITAT magazine.
Will Sanchez is a team leader for an Upper East Side cooperative. He’s also a webmaster for the Galloway Running Group of New York and a graduate of New York
University’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences. In ad-dition, he is active in his Com- munity Board and is a founding member of a local CERT team. In between his work and his huge involvement with his community, he runs marathons. In other
words, Sanchez, like every other team leader, is a powerhouse of energy and involvement. With Cindy DeMaria, a nutritionist whose husband, Al, is president of the co-op’s board, a strategy was worked out for engaging people from the 88 apartments in their co-op. Knocking on doors was ruled out as being much too
aggressive. Instead, they split up the building between them and slipped a flyer under every apartment door, personalizing the notes by adding an additional message from the two of them. The result? Three residents opted to follow the single household
program and six households agreed to form a team. At the first team meeting, the group committed itself to following through on the program and to arriving on time for meetings and staying until the end. Sanchez
committed himself to keeping the meetings shorter than the recommended two hours. The sessions were very productive: some supplies were purchased in bulk for the whole group.
Then, halfway through the program, there was a fire in one of the retail units in the co-op, and everyone had to leave suddenly. The nine ATN households were prepared: they had go-bags ready to grab as they went out of the door. But what did Sanchez’s wife take with her ? Her laptop and her purse. The go-bag was just too heavy. Fire damage was restricted to the retail store but, for Sanchez, the
incident emphasized the im-
portance of the ATN recom-mendation to practice as many of the preparedness actions as possible: pick up your go-bag; find out if you can carry it; try living for a short while without any electricity and see whether your supplies are adequate. His wife now has a much more compact go-bag purchased from an internet site recommended by CERT colleagues.
Sanchez, like the others, emphasizes the huge benefits of making contact with your neighbors. When the citywide blackout occurred in 2004, he was devastated to find
that some of his neighbors refused his offers of help because they didn’t know who he was. Yet he had been living in the building for 15 years.
DeMaria, Sanchez’s deputy leader, has three go-bags in her apartment, one for her husband, one for herself, and one for Lola, her cat. Lola’s go-bag includes enough food for two weeks, water, a bag of litter, and a large aluminum bake pan to use as a litter box. The workbook includes step-by-step instructions for pet supplies. Ms. DeMaria, like many other cat-owners, added the makeshift litter box.
Excerpted from HABITAT Magazine
Full Article Available from CB8’s office
Subscriber of the Month
by Will Sanchez, Run NYC athlete and member of Community Board 8 & ESNA-CERT
“It’s not your finishing time that’s important but the kind of time you have finishing.” — Art Castellano, Director New Jersey Marathon
While 26.2 miles is the length of any marathon in the world, New York’s is special because of its sold-out field of 38,000 international participants and the thunderous cheers for the runners throughout the 5-borough course. This was my second New York City Marathon and my fourteenth overall. While it was my slowest marathon, it nevertheless tied for my most satisfying. The above quote captured my mindset — the kind of time I had.
The day before the marathon, I had lunch with 81-year-old Joy Johnson, who was about to run her 21st consecutive NYC Marathon. Joy was determined to better her 2007 winning time for her age group. She had stepped up her training regimen, including 50 miles of running each week plus speed work, hill-repeats, and running on stadium steps. She asked me to “pace her,” to stay close to her sub-6 hour goal. I accepted the challenge.
On marathon Sunday, Joy was like a pacing tigress who needed to be held back. Our strategy: after every two minutes of running, we took a walk break to conserve our legs and to slow us down from the adrenaline rush. We had many bridges to cross before we would stride across the finish line at Central Park near Tavern on the Green. The start was the two-mile long Verrazano Bridge. We dashed through Brooklyn for the next 11 miles, then a quick hop over the Pulaski Bridge for a short visit in Queens. At mile 15 we ramped up the nearly 100 year-old 59th Street Bridge. We sauntered across this mile-long stretch, our hearts now pounding in anticipation of stepping onto 1st Avenue, with the largest and loudest bunch of fans in wait for the final 10 miles of the marathon. We had huge smiles on our faces and goose-bumps on our skin that had nothing to do with the cold, windy day.
Family and friends were lined up the avenue; we made time for quick hugs and nourishment: energy gels (concentrated paste) that we call “vanilla frosting,” washed down by water. The cheers in many languages coalesced with the sight of all the colorful running outfits from France, Mexico, Japan, Spain, and many other countries. As we made our way up the avenue, we knew the fastest runners had long gone by. It was now a people’s run and the folks on the sidelines did not disappoint, shouting “Go CERT Will,” spying my embossed shirt and “Go Joy” from her admirers. We worked our way into the Bronx via the Willis Avenue Bridge, a tough spot as mile 20 is called the “runner’s wall” that separates those who ran smart from those who were now hurting. As we ran smart, we galloped over the Madison Avenue Bridge back into Manhattan.
We soon looped into Central Park, a relief as knowing we had only two miles to go gave us a boost of energy. We left the park at East 59th Street, jogging towards Columbus Circle, seeing ourselves on the JumboTron. We checked ourselves to be sure we were smear-free — we wanted to look good for our finisher’s photo. We did it — and Joy was again first in her age group, shaving 50+ minutes from her 2007 win! With our finishers’ medals draped over us, I escorted Joy to her West side hotel and floated home to the East 60s.
Joy would have dipped below her six hours goal time but for leg cramps after mile 18 that almost caused her to fall. For only a split second, she allowed herself to think that she was out of the race, but she knew how to handle a cramp, pressing her fingers into it. She licked a salt packet to recoup sodium into her blood stream. She took quick, short walking strides and listened to her body to tell her when she could run again. Joy jogged the final 3 miles. The kind of time we had finishing? Priceless!
CAROL WILSON ARRIVED back at her
Greenwich Village apartment after
a few weeks out of town. She was
too tired to start unpacking. “I sat down,
had a cup of tea, went though several piles
of mail, and then decided it was late and I
was going to bed. So, I walked into my
bedroom, turned on the light, and saw
something awful dripping from my ceiling.”
By 4 A.M., everyone in her building
had received a knock on the door and had
been told to pack a bag and get out fast.
Coincidentally, they had been preparing
for just such an event. Wilson was the
building’s team leader for an experimental
project that has been operating in
New York City for the past two years
under the title “All Together Now”
(ATN). The aim is to see whether it is
possible to get households all over the
city to prepare for disasters that might
hit, from blackouts and hurricanes to terrorist
bombs and toxic emanations from
Since the events of September 11, 2001,
the power blackout of 2004, and Hurricane
Katrina, it is no longer necessary to explain
the concept of emergency preparedness. In
fact, there are so many different programs
out there now – city, state, federal, university,
and others – that it is starting to look
like a flourishing growth area. There’s a
major problem with most of these programs,
however. They provide a wealth of
important information and advice, but they
don’t provide a way to motivate people to
adopt any of the suggested practices.
That’s where “All Together Now”
A Special Program
“All Together Now” comes at the situation
from a different angle. It isn’t the
information you are providing that is the
crucial element of the process; the nut that
you have to crack if you are going to
achieve a high level of emergency readiness
in a population is how to change
behavior patterns so that people will actually
adopt some of the practices being recommended.
A 2005 telephone poll conducted by the
Red Cross revealed that, in spite of living
through 9/11 and the power blackout, more
than 50 percent of New Yorkers hadn’t even
gone so far as to prepare a basic emergency
kit for themselves. As Keith Robertory, head
of a team of disaster education planners at
the Red Cross, says: “We know that
brochures are not a highly effective way of
reaching people. We try to steer away from
the concept that, ‘You have a problem, we
have a brochure.’”
David Gershon, the man behind the
ATN program, has been a leader in developing
ways of getting groups to adopt new
behavior. One of the keys is understanding
how new ideas spread through a population.
Initially, the target has to be the estimated
15 percent of the population who
can be categorized as “early adopters.”
These are the people who are eager to try
out new things. In April 2004, New York
City’s Office of Emergency Management
(OEM) sponsored the first attempt by
Gershon to apply the concept to emergency
preparedness in the city. Could the strategies
he had developed to help communities
combat crime and also to cope with Y2K
problems in 2000 be employed to get New
Yorkers better prepared to deal with terrorism
and other emergencies?
The first step in the program was to
attract people – the “early adopters” – to
become team leaders. Since April 2004,
three team leader training sessions have
been run to provide volunteers with the
techniques necessary to be able to go back
to their buildings or block associations and
initiate emergency preparation programs.
Everyone attending these day-long training
sessions was given a handbook prepared
by Gershon’s Empowerment Institute.
Detailed scenarios were provided for every
stage, from posting flyers (included in the
book), to detailed time allocations for every
There were even scripts that could be
followed when leaving a message on someone’s
answering machine:“Hi (person’s
REPRINTED WITH PERMISSION OFHABITAT MAGAZINE FOR THE BENEFIT OF COMMUNITY BOARD 8 PREPWORK An innovative new program aims to prepare city dwellers for
power blackouts, hurricanes, and terrorist attacks.
Renee Serlin, the president of her Manhattan co-op, produced and directed documentary films in England. She wrote “Shopping for Knowledge” in the AprilHabitat.
name). This is your neighbor, (your name).
I’m calling about the information meeting
at my home/other location on (date, time).
I’m really looking forward to seeing you.
It’s going to be a very important opportunity
to learn what we can do to protect ourselves
and our families in case of an emergency
and get to know each other better as
Team leaders were asked to use these
techniques to try and establish small teams
of five to eight households who would
work with each other through a preparedness
program. In four bi-weekly meetings,
as structured in the “All Together Now”
workbook, every basic preparedness action
was laid out for the team to follow. Every
meeting focused on one area of preparation,
from setting up emergency supplies
and go-bags to coping with energy disruptions
and providing assistance for disabled
or frail neighbors. Households that
didn’t want to work through the program
with a team, were directed by the team
leader to a simpler 30-day version that
they could work through by themselves.
(All the material for the household program
is still available on the ATN web
The Seat Belt
On February 13, the conclusion of the
first phase was marked by an award ceremony
for 71 team leaders who had succeeded
in getting households in their buildings
or blocks through the program. Joseph
Bruno, commissioner of the city’s Office of
Emergency Management, together with
Gershon, presented successful team leaders
with a certificate of recognition.
Alan Leidner was one of the volunteers
who received special recognition for getting
50 percent of his home’s residents to
take part in the program. Every floor in his
55-unit co-op had its own team. For
Leidner, a specialist in developing geospatial
systems, it was “a lot like putting on a
seatbelt when you go for a drive. You never
imagine that you’re going to be in an accident
but you know that it makes a lot of
sense to have that seat belt around you – it
just gives you that little extra margin of
security.” Even more important, he adds, is
that a network is springing up within the
building. People that he had once only nodded
to in the elevator are now people with
whom he is involved.
Leidner’s team decided to augment the
details found in the ATN workbook. They
each took on one item and researched it on
the internet so that they could make recommendations
and provide sources for other
households in the co-op. All that information
has now been incorporated in the
material available on the ATN website.
Leidner keeps a small lamp and a light face
mask on his bedside table. In the morning,
these go into his briefcase so that he has
them with him when he’s riding on the subway.
Anybody who wants to find exactly
the same items can go on the website and
find prices and links to purchasing sources
(see box, p. 12).
Pat Sallin and her husband, Al Doyle, are
team leaders in one of the Stuyvesant Town
buildings on Manhattan’s East Side. Like
Leidner, they both have time-consuming
jobs – Sallin as a portfolio administrator
in an asset management company,
Doyle as a project manager in a contracting
company. But they attended the
September ATN meeting to recruit team leaders
and decided this was something they could
There are 102 apartments in their building.
Six households formed a team and
three additional households opted to work
through the individual household program.
Sallin stresses the value of working this
way. When one person was stuck on how to
complete an action from the workbook, the
others would brainstorm or describe their
own approach to the task. Instead of collecting
all the items recommended for a
go-bag, one team member recommended
the packaged go-bag available from the
www. ReadyFreddy.comsite. Another
member went to Wal-Mart and bought a
large plastic tub to store all the household
emergency supplies in one place.
“You get ideas from the other people on
the team – you see what they did and you
say, ‘Oh, okay, I can do that,’” says Sallin.
“Or somebody says, ‘I have a problem;
what food are you storing; how are you
storing it; where do you find the expiration
dates?’ Ideas start kicking around.”
Before the ATN program, Sallin had
already picked upReady New York, a useful
instructional booklet designed by OEM
as a guide to preparing for emergencies.
“But we just filed it away with the rest of
our magazines and stuff and didn’t do anything.
What this program does is it actually
has you do it.” Working with neighbors
makes the difference: “You form a bond
with the other people.”
The Ex-Boy Scout
Glenn Wolin, a team leader based in
Brooklyn, is a Vietnam vet and a former
boy scout. He had already been through an
intensive 25-week training course to be
part of a Community Emergency Response
Team (CERT) group. CERTs are community-
based volunteers who make themselves
ready to provide emergency help
when the first responders (police, firefighters,
medical teams) are busy dealing with
more critical disaster issues.
Wolin asked his teammates whether
they had ever taken any disaster preparation
actions before. Very few had. But, he
notes, “as a CERT member, this is critical:
we’re taught to take care of ourselves first,
then your family, and then others. If they
haven’t got a secure situation at home, they are
DeMaria(top) with windup radio;
Sanchez(bottom) with “go-bag”: learning
to work as a team.
not leaving their family to help others.” He has
been promoting the idea of getting CERT teams
to use the ATN program as part of their basic
Wolin distributed flyers throughout his
neighborhood, inviting people to come to an
information meeting to hear about the new
city program. The response was minimal.
Like almost all the other leaders, he found
that to get people interested, he had to
make personal contact. Knocking on doors
and talking directly to neighbors eventually
resulted in the creation of four teams.
Wolin ran two of them, and another volunteer
led the other two.
The hardest part was keeping people
focused. “Their lives kept intruding,” says
the ex-boy scout. Getting people to complete
the programs wasn’t easy, but without
them, they would just “read through the literature
but not do anything.”
The ATN guidebook outlines 32 possible
emergency preparation actions. On average,
Wolin’s teams completed 14 of the 32 (some
were not applicable, such as ones that only
apply to households with children). So, taking
14 actions is a very good indication of
Wolin says that a lot of people told him
they couldn’t even contemplate all the
potential disasters; it was overwhelming.
The workbook, with its structured
“recipes,” counters that by leading participants
through the process, step-by-step. At
the end, you have a sense of what to do in
an emergency “and this is empowering.”
Those who work through the team program
report feeling tremendous relief at knowing
that not only are they more prepared, but
that they have neighbors to whom they can
Will Sanchez is a team leader for an
Upper East Side cooperative. He’s also a
webmaster for the Galloway Running
Group of New York and a graduate of New
York University’s Courant Institute of
Mathematical Sciences. In addition, he is
active in his community board and is a
founding member of a local CERT team. In
between his work and his huge involvement
with his community, he runs
marathons. In other words, Sanchez, like
every other team leader is a powerhouse of
energy and involvement.
Together with Cindy DeMaria, a nutritionist,
whose husband Al DeMaria is president
of the co-op’s board, a strategy was
worked out for engaging people from the 88
apartments in their co-op. Knocking on
doors was ruled out as being much too
aggressive. Instead, they split up the building
between them and slipped a flyer under
every apartment door, personalizing the
notes by adding an additional message
from the two of them. The result? Three
residents opted to follow the single household
program and six households agreed to
form a team.
At the first team meeting, the group
committed itself to following through on
the program and to arriving on time for
meetings and staying until the end.
Sanchez committed himself to keeping the
meetings shorter than the recommended
two hours. The sessions were very productive:
some supplies were purchased in bulk
for the whole group.
Then, halfway through the program,
there was a fire in one of the retail units in
the co-op, and everyone had to leave suddenly.
The nine ATN households were prepared:
they had go-bags ready to grab as
they went out of the door. But what did
Sanchez’s wife take with her? Her laptop
and her purse. The go-bag was just too
Fire damage was restricted to the retail
store but, for Sanchez, the incident emphasized
the importance of the ATN recommendation
to practice as many of the preparedness
actions as possible: pick up your
go-bag; find out if you can carry it; try living
for a short while without any electricity and
see whether your supplies are adequate. His
wife now has a much more compact go-bag
purchased from an internet site recommended
by CERT colleagues.
Sanchez, like the others, emphasizes the
huge benefits of making contact with your
neighbors. When the citywide blackout
occurred in 2004, he was devastated to find
that some of his neighbors refused his
offers of help because they didn’t know
who he was. Yet he had been living in the
building for 15 years.
DeMaria, Sanchez’s deputy leader, has
three go-bags in her apartment, one for her
husband, one for herself, and one for Lola,
her cat. Lola’s go-bag includes enough
food for two weeks, water, a bag of litter,
and a large aluminum bake pan to use as a
litter box. The workbook includes step-bystep
instructions for pet supplies. DeMaria,
like many other cat-owners, added the
makeshift litter box.
A Personal Aside
Now, I have to reveal my personal
involvement in this. I believe I am an early
adopter. At least, I was intrigued enough to
sign up for the leadership training course.
However, in my co-op building of 40 units,
only one household signed up to attend an
information meeting and no one embarked
on the ATN program. What did I do wrong?
First, it’s clear from the success stories that
I didn’t make the invitation personal
enough. It went up on the lobby notice
board, I spoke to a few people, and I hoped
for results. Nothing happened. I was
swamped with work and didn’t follow
through on the more extensive guidelines
provided in the training. I think of myself as
one of the failures.
But Gershon has a different take. The
pilot project, he believes, was successful in
showing, albeit in small numbers, that it is
possible to get volunteers to take on the
role of leaders and to change people’s
behavior. In other words, with the right
program structure, even skeptical New
Yorkers will take steps to become prepared.
Results from the almost 1,500 households
who participated in the pilot program
show that there was a significant increase
in preparedness among this group. On
average, people who completed a team
program took 11 preparedness actions. The
most common ones were stocking up with
food and water; preparing a go-bag; purchasing
alternate lighting sources and storing
batteries; making sure that at least one
landline phone was available; assembling
warm clothing; locating a battery-operated
or wind-up radio; checking on household
safety; putting together a first aid kit; and
purchasing a small fire extinguisher.
One thing that has become clear is the
Leider and daughter: be prepared.
need for much more hands-on support for team
leaders. In the pilot program, support for team
leaders came from Gershon’s unit, based in
Woodstock, N.Y., via telephone conferences.
Gershon suggests that if I had received local,
ongoing, peer support instead of long-distance
support from the Empowerment
Institute, I might have gone the distance.
This has, in fact, been the route
Gershon has followed with projects in
other cities. A formal part of those programs
was the establishment of local peer
support that remained in close and frequent
contact with teams. In New York, telephone
support was provided but it wasn’t
peer support, it wasn’t structured into the
design of the program, and it wasn’t
But the pilot program has
revealed something even more key
to the building of preparedness in
the city. Rather than focusing on
individual preparation as the ultimate
goal, the aim of the program is
now seen as building resiliency. So,
although the next phase will be
exploring the ability of the program
to go to scale or spread widely
throughout the city, the focus will be
on establishing core groups within
The Future Is Now
Starting in May, a new layer is
being introduced into the program: 20
volunteers will be trained for the role
of program manager. They will take over
the role that the Empowerment Institute
performed in the pilot. Volunteers will be
selected on the basis of their connections
with people in their buildings, blocks, and
neighborhoods, and with other organizations
throughout the city. Each of the 20
managers will be asked to identify 20 more
people to serve as team leaders; between
them, they will hopefully reach around
5,000 households. Reckoning on an average
of two people per household, the hope is that
this phase will scale up the program to contact
about a quarter of a million people.
When I spoke with Gershon in March
about the new phase, he was still reflecting
on whether it would be possible to get the
20 volunteer program managers that he
was aiming for. It has turned out to be
almost a home run. As All Together Now
gets into its stride, he reports that it is creating
a wave of interest throughout the city.
People are hearing about the new plans and
asking to get involved. At the moment, it
looks as though the 20 program manager
slots are going to be heavily over-subscribed.
But Gershon will be staying with
the limited numbers at this stage. To get it
right, there has to be a gradual scaling up
so that ATN can still be adjusted before it’s
taken up to a citywide level.
Alan Leidner was one of the first people
to sign on as a program manager for the new
phase. Through contacts with a multi-block
association in his area, he is already in touch
with a large group of residents on West
102nd and 103rd streets between Riverside
Drive and Broadway in Manhattan. Other
block associations have asked to be included
in Leidner’s new group; he sees his reach
stretching from West 96th Street all the way
up to West 110th Street. He is confident that
his 20 team leaders will provide the 5,000
Will Sanchez is going to be another of
the 20 program managers. He brings with
him contacts within a huge Upper East
Side multi-block association and the local
Glenn Wolin has already established a
wide-ranging community of households in
his area and will fill the third slot. The 20
volunteers for slots in the new program are
turning out to be people with huge contacts
throughout the city – with their city
council members, community boards,
CERT teams, and block associations.
One volunteer sits as the safety chairwoman
of her community board. She has
access to the 80,000 people within her
area, and she already interacts regularly,
with her local fire and police departments.
In addition to these individual volunteers,
Gershon is now hooking up with a
number of city agencies. The New York
City Housing Authority has formally
signed on to be part of the program: they
have contact with over 600,000 households.
Gershon has allotted them three
program manager slots. The New York
City Department for the Aging (DFTA) is
also working with Gershon to identify volunteer
program managers who can reach
out to the thousands of people under
Gershon estimates that, through the
contacts provided by his 20 program
managers, he will have access to around
one million New Yorkers, although in
this next training phase, the scope is
being carefully limited to just a quarterof-
a-million people. The program
managers will not only
be the link to a broad swathe
of the city’s population, they
will also constitute a think
tank for the program, working
with Gershon to refine
the details and scope of the
At the recognition award
ceremony that concluded the
current phase of ATN, Carol
Wilson was asked to relate
her story to the other team
leaders. Like Sanchez, she
experienced a real emergency
while her team was working
through the program. The
“awful” something exuding through her
ceiling in the middle of the night turned
out to be highly toxic mercury.
Breathing mercury vapor can damage
the nervous system and her apartment was
almost totally destroyed in the clean-up
Fortunately, Wilson and her team had
already started preparing themselves
before the emergency. They’d all bought
flashlights and extra batteries and stocked
up supplies for a sheltering place.
Unfortunately, they hadn’t yet set up their
go-bags. Wilson was the only one in the
building who was able to grab some useful
supplies – she still had her packed
suitcase. Her upstairs neighbor grabbed
the book he was reading and nothing
else. When she eventually gets back into
her building, she’s planning to finally
have the go-bag meeting and one thing is
certain: “Everybody in my building will
be making a go-bag.”H
Woodstock, NY 12498
All Together Now
All Together Now resource list
Ready Freddy emergency preparedness kit
Ready New York guide
(NYC Community Emergency Response Team)
Princetoan Tec Scout LED Headlamp. Item. 55800. $19.99
Item: 82954. $39.99
One-Person Deluxe Fanny Pack Survival Kit.
(Use the direct link, below, or go to the home page, click on “Customer
Service” and enter the reference number: SK1D ) 800-277-3727
A VIEW FROM THE TOP
All Together Now
BY DAVID GERSHON
Our program, “All Together Now,” has
shown so much promise that funding was
secured from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to
help it prepare to scale up citywide. Currently,
the Empowerment Institute, originator of the
program, is recruiting, training, and coaching
20 volunteer program managers from around the
city to lead their communities.
Should we take reasonable steps to protect our
families and ourselves against these risks? This
clear. It is better
to have a plan
for an emergency
to have an emergency
The steps that
make the most
sense in preparing
for an emergency
are a good
will restore the kind of personal and community
resiliency to our lives that we never intended to
give up. What could be more important in
today’s world than to live in a building or on a
block where the residents are working together
to create a strong and resilient social fabric?
Living in a disaster-resilient building or block
represents the new quality of life indicator for
New Yorkers. This is not only the ultimate
defense against disasters, but also a great way to
build relationship-rich buildings and blocks that
can improve our quality of life right now.
The age we live in requires us to radically
rethink our urban expectation of dependency and
separation. What the future will bring is uncertain,
but what is certain is that being prepared
and connected will enable us to face that future
with greater confidence and security.
David Gershon is founder and CEO of Empowerment
Institute. For more information visit www.empowermentinstitute.
Thursday August 27, 2009
10:30 - 11:30 AM / (NYC Time)
Channel 34 of the Time/Warner & Channel 82 of
The Program can now be viewed on the internet at time of cable casting at
& click on channel 34 at site