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The Playbook: Strategies for the Philanthropic Sector in Response to Disasters and Tragedies

Monday, August 11, 2014
We are pleased to announce that the Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP) and the Council of New Jersey Grantmakers (CNJG) are partnering to produce The Playbook: Strategies for the Philanthropic Sector in Response to Disasters and Tragedies, in association with the Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers. 
While several excellent reports and guides on disaster philanthropy exist, they primarily focus on single disasters.  Our national philanthropic sector does not have a comprehensive repository of the innovative strategies, effective best practices, lessons learned, and successful collaborations that grantmakers and regional associations nationwide have supported and/or developed in response to natural disasters, terrorism, wide-scale violence and mass shootings.  
Like many regional associations around the nation who have been faced with a disaster or tragedy, CNJG and its membership were faced with the daunting responsibility to swiftly and effectively respond to the colossal damage wreaked by Superstorm Sandy, even though they had no experience in disaster recovery. Several of our colleagues around the nation offered sage advice and counsel on lessons they learned in the wake of a disaster, and this information was extremely helpful as New Jersey grantmakers scrambled to implement effective action.
In response to the growing demand of providing resources to help donors make thoughtful disaster-related giving decisions and maximize the impact of their gifts, CDP was launched with the mission to transform the field of disaster philanthropy and to increase donor effectiveness throughout the lifecycle of disasters through its educational, fund opportunities and strategic guidance. 
Together, CDP and CNJG are teaming up to document the philanthropic sector’s power to support ongoing recovery efforts and rebuild resilient communities through specific accounts of innovations and experiences.  And we need your help.  We are hoping that you are able to share your insight, expertise and knowledge of your own organization’s disaster response.
Designed as a multimedia, interactive online magazine, The Playbook will detail the strategies and partnerships developed after disasters, as well as highlight resources, information, go-to expertise, testimonials of impact, and examples of collaborative partnerships. 
The Playbook will be organized around issues, not specific disasters or geographic locales.  Therefore, we are looking for examples of response tactics around housing, mental health and wellness, immediate relief and mass care, advocacy and legal aid, education, communication, hunger and poverty, environmental issues, mitigation and preparedness, among others.  The Playbook will document effective funder collaboratives, tactics for partnering with FEMA, HUD, state and local governments, as well as strategies for grantmakers to effectively collaborate with their regional association in times of disasters.
These links will take you to our online survey:  one survey is for grantmakers and the other for regional associations.  
If your organization has not had to respond to a disaster or tragedy (either through grantmaking or other activities) it would still be helpful if you would complete the basic contact information and answer “no” to question #1.  The main page of the survey also offers guidance on how to share your organization’s survey with your staff so that multiple colleagues may contribute.   
Thank you for completing the survey no later than September 1, 2014.
The Center for Disaster Philanthropy and Council of New Jersey Grantmakers gratefully acknowledge The Playbook's supporters without whom, our work on this project would not be possible. 
Leadership support for The Playbook has been generously provided by The Rita Allen Foundation. Additional support for The Playbook has been provided by PSEG Foundation.