Know your surroundings
Support your community

Fires. Floods. Earthquakes. Heatwaves. Hurricanes. Landslides.

Resilience has never been more important — or more urgent. The ability to adapt, act and spring back is essential. Knowing your neighborhood before an emergency hits can help save lives as well as reduce injuries and property damage.

 

Virtuous circle

Reacting quickly and calmly is vital. When official resources may be stretched, resiliency maps enable individuals and communities to evaluate needs and cooperate quickly.

A Resiliency Map stores information about assets, resources and hazards within a given geographical area. They can be printed and housed offline -a crucial advantage when electricity and connectivity may down or disrupted for days.  During the first few hours or days following an event, essential services are likely to be unavailable and people should expect to act on their own. These maps provide critical information to people during an emergency response, turning awareness into action.

Some of the useful features highlighted on a Resiliency Map may include fire hydrants, cisterns, shelters, construction sites and chemical hazard warnings posted outside gas stations, car repair shops and the like. Following an event, these maps can also be used to track damage.

Why open source

Resiliency Maps contribute to and are powered by OpenStreetMap, a community-driven, free, editable map of the world backed by the not-for-profit OpenStreetMap Foundation. Our entire toolkit is open source, ensuring that the maps produced will be available to anyone who wants to use them and never subject to the bottom line of a for-profit company.

Preparedness is a shared responsibility; Resiliency Maps can be added to or edited by people across the city to provide information specific to where they live, work or go to school. The crowdsourced nature of Resiliency Maps means they don’t require a stable group of technical administrators or rely on a single group of committed volunteers to stay up to date.

Be resilient

The goal of the Resiliency Maps project is to build a replicable process that anyone can use to build their own maps. It’s a simple step to engaging in the future of your family and your community.

It started life as a community project in San Francisco, with a small group of volunteers using tools to map the large, rapidly changing South of Market neighborhood with a view to the next earthquake. Like us, you may have a group where tech savvy and time commitments can be at odds. We’ve tested out ways to make these maps using pencil and paper, smartphone apps, third-party tools and have written tutorials so you can try them out, too.

Natural disasters will just keep coming — but we can arm ourselves with knowledge.

Sign up for our mailing list  for ways to get involved in Resiliency Maps, check out the blog for tools you can use and follow @resiliencymaps on Twitter.