F.A.N.S. (Friends and Neighbors Sudbury) Project

flood picture 3
Read an article from the Northern Life on the 2009 City of Greater Sudbury flood.

F.A.N.S. (Friends and Neighbours Sudbury) is a new project by the Greater Sudbury Climate Change Consortium is designed to prepare residents of various communities around Greater Sudbury for inclement weather brought on by our changing climate.

The project was initiated as a result of a massive storm in 2009 that flooded basements, yards, and roads in the downtown and Flour Mill areas of Sudbury. Emergency response personnel and city workers were fully occupied attempting to assess the extent of the damage and to come to the aid of those in need. There was a reported $30-40 million dollars' worth of property damage.

Because of the changing climate, the Climate Change Consortium partners believed that the storm would not be an isolated incident, and resolved to create an initiative to help Greater Sudbury residents prepare for, and deal with, inclement weather situations.

Initiatives like FANS exist in many cities and towns across Ontario; several smaller communities run "Neighbours Helping Neighbours" initiatives, while Hamilton and Toronto have "Community Awareness Emergency Response groups" to organize and practice activities to reduce the risk during crises such as power outages, ice storms, and pandemics.

Greater Sudbury would be the first city to implement a program specifically intended to help residents deal with the fallout from climate change.The Greater Sudbury Climate Change Consortium plans to work with residents to develop FANS into a program that the community finds both useful and will be self-sustaining.

This would include, but is not limited to:

  • Ensuring that residents have sufficient access to medical care,
  • Food, and other types of aid during an emergency,
  • Including, if necessary, evacuation and lodging

The Consortium (GSCCC) will also endeavour to see citizens and volunteers working together to ensure that people with mobility problems or young children would have someone to help out after inclement weather situations, for example:

  • By shoveling their driveways after a storm;
  • That neighbors who may be disabled or elderly have someone to check on them and lend a hand after inclement weather,
  • And that residents can collaborate to ensure that their neighbourhoods are prepared in the event of an emergency

Conservation Sudbury/Nickel District Conservation Authority (NDCA) has taken the lead on this project so far, under the guidance of Conservation Sudbury Board Member Jennifer Davidson. Representatives for Conservation Sudbury, including Jennifer and Conservation Sudbury Chairperson Lin Gibson, have met with representatives from N.O.A.H. (New Opportunities And Hope),GSERV (Greater Sudbury Emergency Response Volunteer registry), and the Social Planning Council of Sudbury.

On January 15th, 2014, the Greater Sudbury Climate Change Consortium partners will meet for a day long workshop to further develop FANS into a series of concrete deliverables. Outcomes from this workshop, including an Action Plan, will be posted to the Climate Change Consortium website.

For more information please contact Jennifer Davidson, email: jen.davidson@utoronto.ca.

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