Building more resilient communitiesfrom coast to coast.

The human mind is highly skilled at justifying why we do not need to be concerned about risk. From optimism bias (“bad things will happen somewhere, but not here”) to simple procrastination (“we will deal with this later”), people are not naturally inclined to address risk. This presents a major challenge for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) when it comes to engaging with communities about floods and flooding.

For the past three years, Global Prairie has worked with FEMA to enhance the way the Agency approaches community engagement and risk communications. Our efforts include the development of messaging, materials, and outreach strategies for working with communities on issues related to flood risk. This requires a customized approach that speaks to the unique nature of a community and “meets them where they are” in their understanding of flood risk. Only once a community has an awareness and full appreciation for their risk, can they begin to take steps to mitigate against it. With billions of dollars and thousands of lives lost to flooding every year, the goal is to create communities that are stronger, safer, and more resilient when the next storm hits.

Flooding is the most common and costliest type of disaster in the United States, occurring in all 50 states and costing billions annually in repair and recovery.