Idea for Disaster Situations

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  • Idea
  • Updated 2 years ago
  • Not Planned
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I have a Correspondent child in Indonesia and immediately became concerned when I heard about the earthquake. I did a small bit of research and saw that her center is no where near where the earthquaake was. I think most Sponsors have the same initial panic that I did when they hear of things in their child(ren) countries and most of us aren't very knowledgeable about the geography of other countries. All of this to say maybe, in the event of an emergency, Compassion could post a list of center ID numbers that are in or near the affected area and that way Sponsors could be more aware of the possibility of whether their child has been affected.
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Chantel

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Posted 2 years ago

  • 2
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Beth

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Chantel, I think that is a great idea! I have never been affected by this personally, but I think any sponsor whose child's country was affected by a natural disaster would appreciate this. Also, I think it would save a lot of contacts from people trying to find out information, as well as not letting sponsors wait endlessly just hoping not to hear bad news. I hope Compassion considers your idea.
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Adam

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Hi Chantel! Compassion will always contact you directly if your child is ever involved in a disaster situation. One of my sponsored kids lives in Medan, Indonesia, which is a little over 200 miles from the epicenter of the earthquake that occurred last week and Compassion emailed me the day after it happened to let me know my child might have been affected and asking me to pray, which I thought was super impressive! The email said if I don't hear from them in the next couple of weeks then I could rest assured that my child was safe and had not been affected, so no news is good news in that regard. I think they probably go off of USGS data for earthquakes, and contact any sponsors who kids live within the affected area to let them know about it, because there was a USGS map in the email. I really like the direct contact because I wasn't even aware that my child might have been affected by the earthquake until I received that email.
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Susan, Sponsor and Donor Relations, Social Media

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Hi Chantel! I agree with you that this is very helpful because the child could be a long way from where the disaster or crisis occurred. In fact, I almost always do what you did for sponsors when they ask me if their child was affected, especially if we haven't received any official reports from the country office yet. That said, I could also see posting a list of centers that were in the area as potentially problematic. For example, we may not have verifiable reports immediately after a disaster. Let's say we know that a sponsor's child lives in an area that was affected. That might not necessarily mean that that child and family are affected and many sponsors go to the worst case scenario (ex: my child is dead!). We don't want to freak people out unnecessarily. It often takes weeks to days to receive verified reports from our country offices after a disaster, depending on whether the country office was affected and how far away the centers that were affected are from the country office. If a sponsor knows their child lives in an area that was affected, it could take weeks before we can tell them for sure. We will also always let sponsors know if their child, family, or child's student center was affected. That said, I do think it would be nice to be able to give sponsors some information more quickly after a disaster. We will continue to consider your idea and I will let you know of our progress. 

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