The Wai`anae Coast Disaster Readiness Team was established in 2014. With the increase of natural and man-made disasters it was apparent that the Wai`anae Coast communities needed to do something to address the real possibility of Wai`anae residents being cut off and isolated for a period of time before government assistance could establish aid. It also became clear that the communities have a large elderly population as well as individuals with access issues and functional needs who may not be able to fend for themselves.
A handful of concerned and dedicated Wai`anae Coast residents stepped up to volunteer their time and resources to help their communities by bringing awareness to the subject of emergency/disaster preparedness - understanding the various types of hazards: how to prepare for, mitigate, plan for, respond to, and recover from them. We work in partnership with local government agencies, private businesses & non-profit organizations to offer monthly workshops as well as technical training, all to prepare the community for the event of an emergency/disaster. We were formed as a result of the Hawaii Hazards Awareness & Resilience Program (HHARP), a cooperative effort between the State of Hawaii Emergency Management Agency (HI-EMA), and the City & County of Honolulu Department of Emergency Management (Honolulu-DEM) which also works in consort with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Our group meets every 3rd Wednesday of the month and is always looking for volunteers to help in our efforts. There is regularly a new topic on disaster preparedness, so we encourage the public to come out to attend our free workshops to get better prepared for an all-hazard event. We want to further develop the WCDRT, made up of volunteers to help their communities in the Makua/Keaau, Makaha, Wai`anae, Maili, Lualualei and Nanakuli areas.