An August 25 article in The Bainbridge Review reports that only 35 percent of island neighborhoods have gone through the Map Your Neighborhood (MYN) program, which is the foundation of Bainbridge’s disaster preparedness strategy.
According to that strategy, every neighborhood should be trained in the MYN system. In MYN, residents organize in neighborhood teams each let by a captain. Each MYN team is comprised of about 15 to 20 homes. The residents of a neighborhood share basic information with one another, such as the (a) availability of tools like chainsaws and generators, (b) availability of special skills like nursing or other medical training, (c) locations of propane shutoff valves, (d) numbers of pets and livestock, and (e) existence of special needs, like whether residents use wheelchairs or are hearing or vision impaired. Then, following an emergency, the neighbors check on one another to provide emergency assistance. If a neighbor requires an emergency response, fellow residents help the neighbor by providing basic help, contacting first responders, and/or helping transport the neighbor to the nearest disaster hub.
Anne LeSage, the City’s Emergency Management Coordinator, is spearheading an awareness campaign this fall to help drive the community to 100 percent MYN participation. If your neighborhood is one of the 65 percent of unprepared neighborhoods on the island, contact LeSage at firstname.lastname@example.org. She will provide you with training materials to help you get the MYN process started. The initial training session for you and your neighbors lasts about 90 minutes.