resilience reporter

resilience starts with information

Wildfires scorch a hole through Southern California’s mythology of paradise


Official Toll in Puerto Rico: 64. Actual Deaths May Be 1,052. Note: Chart shows the cumulative number of deaths in 2017 compared with an average of the number of deaths in 2015 and 2016. A decrease in deaths occurs on some dates because the number in 2017 was fewer than in previous years. The New York Times | Source: Demographic Registry of Puerto Rico (deaths in September and October as of Dec. 5)

Wildfires scorch a hole through Southern California’s mythology of paradise

Southern California is the landscape of dreams, or so the mythology goes. Newcomers arrive. They raise the roof beam high over the simplest foundations and pass on to a new generation the hope that they too might believe in this sun-drenched paradise.

Time, however, has cast a shadow on this pact, and it sometimes feels like a distant romance. Yet glimpses of it can still be seen, as the fires of this last week have shown.

Beginning Monday night, the conflagration has been indiscriminately cruel, incinerating homes, killing horses and upending lives. It has touched mogul and farmer, homeowner and renter, young and old alike.

Flaring up almost at random, it has linked disparate cities and neighborhoods — Ventura and Sylmar, Santa Paula and Bel-Air, Malibu and Bonsall — and forged a common experience among dusty inland horse ranches, coastal mansions, oak-hidden enclaves and ocean-view apartments.

In this climate and on this landscape, fire is the great equalizer.

But all natural disasters are. They provide a glimpse into the vulnerability of others no matter their place in life. Houston. Florida. Puerto Rico.

Only it wasn’t supposed to be this way, not here at least. Palm trees aren’t supposed to ignite…


Official Toll in Puerto Rico: 64. Actual Deaths May Be 1,052.

A review by The New York Times of daily mortality data from Puerto Rico’s vital statistics bureau indicates a significantly higher death toll after the hurricane than the government there has acknowledged.

The Times’s analysis found that in the 42 days after Hurricane Maria made landfall on Sept. 20 as a Category 4 storm, 1,052 more people than usual died across the island. The analysis compared the number of deaths for each day in 2017 with the average of the number of deaths for the same days in 2015 and 2016.

Officially, just 64 people died as a result of the storm that ravaged the island with nearly 150-mile-an-hour winds, cutting off power to 3.4 million Puerto Ricans. The last two fatalities were added to the death toll on Dec. 9….


New Facility to Improve Readiness & Resilience for JBSA

For more than two years, key leaders from Joint Base San Antonio and city of San Antonio community leaders worked together to prepare and constructed a new facility called the Vogel Resiliency Center.

The Vogel Resiliency Center is a project that’s going to bring together eight entities of resiliency services into one location. This facility is unique to fort Sam Houston and unique in the Army.  The VRC will house the Army Wellness Center, Public Health Nursing, Chaplain and Spiritual services, Military Family Readiness, Health Promotion Operations, Army Substance Abuse Program, Nutrition Coaching, and Comprehensive Solider and Family Fitness under one roof. The facility also had a teaching kitchen, which will allow individuals to learn improved methods of nutritional cooking.

“The VRC is intended to be an integrated platform for delivery of resiliency and readiness services,” said Maj. Lakisha N. Flagg, VRC Action Officer. “Traditionally those services are offered across the installation in a variety of different settings.” Flagg continued, “we’re bringing all of those here [to the VRC] to deliver those services to different parts of our population including active duty of all branches of service, family members and…



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