Nonprofit Organizations' Disaster Management | Free Essay Example

Nonprofit Organizations’ Disaster Management

Words: 5498
Topic: Environment


The impact of nonprofit organizations on the process of disaster management is rather significant. Numerous nonprofit organizations focus on the process of helping other organizations to get back on track. There are also smaller nonprofit organizations that function similarly to their public counterparts. Within the framework of this research proposal, the author addresses the problem of nonprofit organizations and connects it to the area of disaster management.

The background of the issues inherent in this sector is carefully outlined as the researcher conducted an in-depth literature review on nonprofit organizations and discovered several hypotheses that will have to be validated in the final research project. Also, the investigator pays close attention to the methodology of the research as they consider that conducting a literature review and supporting it with several simulations will be sufficient to make conclusions regarding the role of nonprofit organizations in disaster management. To support their suppositions, the author of this research proposal addresses several research objectives characteristic of the nonprofit sector and aligns them with the current research project.

Those include proper allocation of human recovery, the act of shifting responsibilities, evaluation of the reliability of disaster response, and the prediction of return on investment in the case of a disaster. In the next section of the paper, the author of the proposal discusses the resources that are required to conduct the research project successfully. It is stated that the funding requirements of the project will include salaries, software costs, and transportation costs.

The most important resources are listed, and a rationale for using each of the items is also provided. Then, the researcher goes further and describes the personnel that will be necessary to implement the research project that was outlined earlier in the paper. The team is going to consist of specialists in the area of disaster management. The research proposal ends with a review of the investigator’s budget expenses. The approximations are presented in the form of a table with all the relevant comments and the inclusive sum of outlays. Overall, the study is expected to expand the knowledge in the field of disaster management as the researcher is interested in performing an in-depth analysis of the nonprofit sector and its implications for the above-mentioned area.


Numerous natural disasters occur each year all over the world. The most important thing about these calamities is that they substantially impact the economic state of the country that is exposed to the issue of natural disasters (Bendimerad, Zayas, Khazai, & Borinaga, 2015). Of course, there are different types of natural disasters that numerous businesses across the world are currently exposed to (these include major floods, earthquakes, and other calamities).

It is safe to say that the damage that is caused by natural disasters is rather explicit and cannot be overlooked as the latter may destroy buildings, companies’ equipment, and arrays of sensitive information (Bryce, 2017). Within any given setting, natural disasters have a serious impact on the human capital that is available to organizations and their ultimate performance. While it is not always perceived as a major threat, a natural disaster may become a premise to a firm closing down and leaving its workers unemployed for an unknown period (Busch & Givens, 2013). Of course, one may argue that natural disasters are not 100% negative because they can influence how the organization comes back from the slump, but it is important to realize that various organizations react to natural calamities differently (Bryce, 2017). Therefore, it is interesting to see how nonprofit organizations can deal with the issue of natural disasters.

The current proposal hypothesizes that nonprofit organizations are rather vulnerable to the adverse impact of natural disasters and the damage that is done by natural calamities cannot be mitigated on a short-term scale because the damage that is done by natural calamities is backed by the financial state of any given organization (Chikoto, Sadiq, & Fordyce, 2012). Therefore, it is hard to foresee any potential impact of a natural disaster on a nonprofit organization.

This supposition is based on the fact that in the majority of the cases, nonprofit organizations do not possess any advanced technologies or have any prevention strategy in place that may help them to overcome the complexities of natural disasters. For instance, the process of creative destruction that is recurrently applied by bigger corporations is not always available to nonprofit organizations (Busch & Givens, 2013). Based on this argument, the researcher believes that the overall impact of natural disasters on nonprofit organizations is strictly negative due to the numerous theoretical and physical vulnerabilities of the latter that will be discussed further in the paper (Bendimerad et al., 2015).

The researcher also believes that natural disasters impose several limitations on the organizations that operate in the nonprofit sector and expects to investigate this issue further in the paper (Kapucu, 2012). In perspective, another hypothesis of the study is that the level of survival capability depends on the presence of a certain leadership style and several disaster management plans that are validated by the administration (Busch & Givens, 2013). The reason behind this hypothesis is the fact that the majority of nonprofit organizations are not able to come back after being exposed to a grave natural disaster and win instead of losing (Bryce, 2017).

The idea that has to be taken into consideration when validating this hypothesis is that the concept of natural selection that is commonly applied to the majority of business environments does not fit within the framework of the nonprofit sector (Busch & Givens, 2013). This means that the average level of output is always expected to drop when a nonprofit organization is being hit by a natural disaster. The problem is that even the biggest and high-performing nonprofit organizations are not safe when it comes to natural calamities because the concept of unnatural selection is relevant within any given environment (Chikoto & Neely, 2013).


The rationale behind this particular research is that there is a strict necessity to investigate the nonprofit sector further and find ways to mitigate the influence of natural disasters on their continuous performance and ability to come back after being exposed to the damage (Chikoto & Neely, 2013). According to the evidence provided by one of the researchers in the area, it is safe to say that the author expects to contribute to this particular area of disaster management by conducting extensive research and gathering the evidence that will be synthesized and processed (Bryce, 2017). Even though how nonprofit organizations function is relatively different from what one can observe in common business companies, numerous adverse outcomes have to be researched and evaluated from some perspectives (Busch & Givens, 2013).

This research project will address the issues of the importance of having a disaster management plan in place and predicting the short- and long-term impacts of natural disasters (Bendimerad et al., 2015). Nonetheless, one of the problems that were identified by the researcher right away was the fact that a cluster of voluntary closedowns might be triggered by a natural disaster that occurred within the area where a nonprofit organization is located (Chikoto et al., 2012).

The researcher is also interested in investigating the problems that are inherent in the post-disaster period because there is a rather extensive list of limitations that may overlap and create obstacles for nonprofit organizations in terms of disaster management (Busch & Givens, 2013). The key objective of this research is to reach a verdict regarding the question of whether nonprofit organizations can survive natural disasters and make the most out of it (just like bigger companies do).

Another focus of this research is the connection between the involvedness of nonprofit employees in the process of developing a relevant disaster management plan. The author believes that collaborative efforts of employees will have a positive impact on any organization (Bryce, 2017). The last concept is also inextricably linked to the efficiency of any given nonprofit organization because the values inherent in economic development are relevant for public organizations as well (Chikoto & Neely, 2013). On a bigger scale, the researcher will expand the existing research on the subject and address the concepts mentioned above to come up with an all-inclusive disaster management plan that can be implemented by any given nonprofit organization. In perspective, the research project may become a premise to a comprehensive disaster management policy that will address the issues inherent in the nonprofit sector (Bryce, 2017).

The background of this research also has numerous resemblances to the issue of emergency managers that commonly turn to nonprofit organizations for help when it comes to the concept of disaster management (Kapuku, Hawkins, & Rivera, 2014). Certain nonprofit organizations concentrate solely on the prevention and mitigation of the consequences of natural disasters. The most renowned nonprofit organization out of all these is the American Red Cross (that is also commonly abbreviated as ARC). Since its advent, the ARC was involved in several different disaster emergency issues and assisted an extensive array of individuals in compliance with the Federal Response Plan (Bryce, 2017). Therefore, to some extent, the ARC can be considered a federal agency that is in charge of allocating and managing mass care resources.

The concept of disaster management services is also covered by the American Red Cross because the latter coordinates the services that are provided by this nonprofit organization and represents other smaller nonprofit organizations. Even though this nonprofit organization is not directly related to any corporate issues, it may still be useful in terms of providing shelter and first aid to those employees that were seriously affected by a natural disaster. The majority of smaller nonprofit organizations follow the path of the ARC and do their best to provide services that will help the workers exposed to the outcomes of a natural disaster (Bryce, 2017). It is safe to say that the American Red Cross has a substantial impact on how nonprofit organizations are perceived because this organization plays a rather important role when it comes to post-disaster events (Kapuku et al., 2014).

The researcher expects to investigate the influence of nonprofit organizations on the process of business restoration and the impact of the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD) on this process (Busch & Givens, 2013). Within the framework of the current research, it is important to understand that even though the NVOAD was formed to share critical information among other nonprofit organizations, the core objective of the NVOAD is to coordinate the processes of coming back after a disaster and managing the communication among the nonprofit organizations that may not restore the business on their own (Peerbolte & Collins, 2012). The researcher will conduct a literature review on this topic as well to understand how the NVOAD can impact the processes of cooperation and communication due to the pivotal importance of these concepts (Chikoto & Neely, 2013).

According to Bryce (2017), the significance of nonprofit organizations can also be highlighted by the increasing number of natural disasters that occur all over the world. The scope of these disasters is also a required topic of discussion. The background of this research project is also supported by the possibility to find better long-term ways to deal with disasters using involving several nonprofit organizations in the process of restoring business (Bendimerad et al., 2015).

This supposition is supported by the fact that a variety of disaster recovery and management strategies would not exist today if it were not for the nonprofit organizations that will be scrutinized within the framework of this research (Chikoto et al., 2012). The researcher also believes that the impact of nonprofit organizations can be measured by the efficiency of the activities that are offered by nonprofit organizations responsible for mitigating the consequences of natural disasters. This includes inter-organizational communication in times of the most influential natural calamities that may leave numerous people jobless (Busch & Givens, 2013).

The gaps that currently exist in the area of disaster management are expected to be closed owing to this research project because the investigator and their team will perform an in-depth analysis of all the variables that contribute to the influence of nonprofit organizations on the process of disaster management. While researching the topic, the investigator also found out that the objectives that are critical to the NVOAD are also in line with the values of resident and statewide Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (that are also known as VOADs) (Bryce, 2017).

The researcher concluded that it will be necessary to study the competencies that are crucial for those individuals and organizations that are involved in disaster management processes. The existing literature on the subject hints at the fact that the key objective of managing disasters is to check if the given organization is prepared to meet a disaster and possesses required equipment that will speed up the processes of recovery and response (Tan, 2013).

When we speak of the nonprofit background of this issue, we have to take into consideration the concepts of responsibility and transparency because hypothetically, without them not a single nonprofit organization will be able to provide its services to those in need. There are various requirements regarding the standards of the services provided that will also have to be studied within the framework of this research (Busch & Givens, 2013). The researcher is certain that one of the issues that are the core contributors to the advent of limitations in the area of disaster management is the size of the organizational budget and the number of resources that were allocated to disaster management planning processes (Kapucu, 2012). The experience of both the staff and volunteers (if there will be any) is also important because nonprofit organizations seriously depend on the human resources that are available to them (Bryce, 2017).

Before switching to the description of the proposed research, it is also important to assess the role of nonprofit organizations within the framework of the National Response Plan. It should be taken into account that the concept of collaboration with responders is one of the underlying perceptions included in the notion of disaster management (Chikoto et al., 2012). The researcher expects to study the overall impact of nonprofit organizations on the process of providing disaster relief services and sustaining life. It is also hypothesized that natural disasters can cause emotional and physical distresses in any given employee that can be mitigated with the help of nonprofit organizations (only in the case if assistance from any other source is unobtainable (Bryce, 2017).

Despite their theoretical invisibility, nonprofit organizations tend to promote disaster-related recovery and are willing to help those individuals who became jobless or the organizations that cannot recover on their own. Even though there are numerous federal initiatives concerning the process of providing mass care and human services, the existence of such nonprofit organizations as the American Red Cross may significantly affect the disaster recovery process for both public and smaller nonprofit organizations. Nonetheless, the positive influence of nonprofit organizations in terms of leadership and coordination will have to be validated within the framework of the existing research (Busch & Givens, 2013).

The investigator also believes that the presence of large nonprofit organizations that function based on the Natural Response Plan creates several opportunities for smaller firms to recover after being exposed to a natural disaster that could not have been evaded or mitigated in any way (for instance, an incident of national significance) (Nolte, Martin, & Boenigk, 2012).

The problem that will also be covered within the framework of the current research is the verification of the role of nonprofit organizations of all sizes in the process of disaster emergency management (Bryce, 2017). Evidently, there will be several limitations that will have a relative impact on the appropriateness of the research project but it can be started right away that such nonprofit organizations as the American Red Cross and the members of the NOVAD are habitually responsible for coordinating the actions during the process of managing a disaster and dealing with its consequences. This particular research project is important because it will concentrate on the role of nonprofit organizations in terms of the notions of disaster response and recovery (Bendimerad et al., 2015). The investigation will focus on the impact of nonprofit organizations and the methodology proposed by the researcher, and several research areas that have to be covered are discussed in the next section of the paper.

Description of Proposed Research

The researcher believes that the best way to address the issue of studying the impact of disaster management on nonprofit organizations is to conduct an extensive literature review and combine it with a series of simulations. By doing the latter, the researcher expects to compare the outcomes of being exposed to different natural disasters in terms of both private and public organizations (Chikoto & Neely, 2013).

In this case, the literature review will be necessary to either validate or refute the hypotheses that were stated earlier in the paper. This method is chosen because the researcher is eager to gain as much insight as possible and realize the significance of the problem before running any simulations. On a bigger scale, one of the key objectives that the researcher wants to achieve is the disclosure of the limitations that are inherent in the majority of the existing nonprofit organizations (Bendimerad et al., 2015). In perspective, the obtained data will be analyzed and generalized to come up with several universal decision-making strategies that will be beneficial to any nonprofit organization (Kapuku et al., 2014). The proposed strategies will be implemented theoretically first to measure their hypothetical impact on the existing state of affairs. Then, the impact of these strategies will be measured against previous encounters with disasters in terms of monetary and human resource losses (Bryce, 2017).

The success of the research project would be measured by the ability of any given nonprofit organization to overcome the complexities that are inherent in natural calamities and perform a comeback in the case if the company was seriously damaged by the disaster.

The proposed investigation will also be covering several research areas that were pointed out by the researcher. These research areas are in full compliance with the existing hypotheses and the background of the study that was outlined in the previous chapter of the proposal. The first research area that is of interest to the investigator is the analysis of the human recovery peculiarities and the process of including nonprofit organizations in the policy-making and disaster recovery equations (Chikoto & Neely, 2013).

Addressing this research area is critical because it will help the researcher to identify the mechanisms that may enable the government to certify the actions of any given nonprofit organizations throughout the pre- and post-disaster periods (Bendimerad et al., 2015). The problem here consists in the fact that the involvement of nonprofit organizations has to be monitored and maintained. Therefore, specific planning strategies should be in place to promote long-term recovery and re-evaluate the roles of the staff to make the most out of the available monetary and human resources. One of the concepts that are inherent in this research area is the need to promote human recovery (Busch & Givens, 2013).

For a nonprofit organization to support such initiatives, there should be a strategy in place to manage the resources and validate the readiness of the organization to take care of its employees at any cost. Moreover, the researcher identified some limitations that transpire throughout multiple emergencies within the environments that are vulnerable to ongoing disasters (Bryce, 2017). Therefore, the process of community restoration is the first research area that has to be addressed (measured, benchmarked, and evaluated) in the current research project.

The second research area that was recognized by the researcher is the problem of shifting responsibilities between nonprofit organizations and the government when trying to make recovery efforts. This means that the period that is also known as the transition of responsibilities may last for an unknown period and have an adverse influence on the outcomes of the given disaster (Chikoto & Neely, 2013). Therefore, the researcher is interested in investigating this issue because the coordination between a nonprofit organization and the government can be restrictive in terms of the success of the response efforts of the former (Bendimerad et al., 2015).

After reviewing relevant literature on the subject, the author of this proposal concluded that for a nonprofit organization to respond to a natural disaster, it has to come prepared and incorporate quite a few recovery activities in its recovery plan (Kapucu, 2012). Moreover, the investigator identified several collaboration issues of a cross-sector origin that may critically affect the process of incorporating nonprofit organizations in the governmental disaster management plan (Chikoto et al., 2012).

Within the framework of the current paper, it should also be stated that the differences in missions can become several impassable obstacles if the nonprofit-government relationships will not be addressed (Bryce, 2017). Regardless, this is not the main issue that is contained in the second research area. We have to take into account not the benefits of involving nonprofit organizations in the process of disaster management but the development of a standard initiative that will be incorporated in governmental policies regarding the provision of recovery services (Busch & Givens, 2013).

Also, there is no direct connection between the existing evidence and how nonprofit organizations can assign roles and responsibilities during natural disasters (Bendimerad et al., 2015). Here, the problem consists in the fact that the government tends to withdraw from this kind of discussion, so it is vital to come up with several practices that will support the coordination of actions performed by a nonprofit organization.

The third research area that is addressed by the researcher is connected to the costs of the process of human recovery (Kapuku et al., 2014). The main issue that is inherent in this research area is the analysis of the financial impact of a disaster on a nonprofit organization. Here, pre-established agreements and other aspects associated with disaster management have to be reviewed (Chikoto & Neely, 2013). According to the information that was obtained by the investigator, there is no general algorithm that allows an organization to calculate the costs of human recovery. Moreover, the researcher is not certain whether this general algorithm has to be established (Chikoto et al., 2012).

Extending this topic, the investigator concluded that there is not enough information regarding the elements of the algorithm mentioned above in terms of the necessary resources (including different social services, health insurance, and other resources that are critical to the working environment). On the other hand, it is found that a relevant plan for the preparedness stage can be beneficial in several ways (Bendimerad et al., 2015).

The fact is, we will have to take into account the process of resource allocation and the overall attitude of a nonprofit organization toward a natural disaster to make conclusions regarding the impact of the latter. Therefore, it may also be necessary to include the scope and the nature of a disaster in the final equation (Busch & Givens, 2013). The researcher scrutinized some journal articles and found out that quite a few nonprofit organizations provide their services during the period of disaster (short- and long-term recovery) but the problem consists of the fact that nonprofit organizations remain vulnerable to those natural disasters as well (Bryce, 2017).

In addition to this, there is not enough information regarding the funding of recovery and case management services sponsored by nonprofit organizations. Based on the identified research area, the investigator expects to address the problem of revising the existing disaster management models that are responsible for approximating the amount of financial support that is necessary within any given framework (Kapucu, 2012). The researcher believes that the concepts of human recovery and organizational infrastructure will have to be separated to ensure that satisfactory cost and time guesstimates are developed.

The fourth research area that will have to be addressed by the investigator is the size of return on investment that is going to depend on the notion of cost savings and the extent to which the given nonprofit organization is involved in the process of post-disaster recovery (Peerbolte & Collins, 2012). If we speak of a certain recovery algorithm, we will have to take into account leadership practices that are typical of a nonprofit organization during the process of restoration. One of the questions that the researcher expects to answer is whether leadership styles characteristic of nonprofit organizations can lead to cost savings and promote human recovery (Bendimerad et al., 2015).

The overall cost of a disaster recovery program has to be analyzed because it may turn out to be smaller than a recovery program that is conducted on a governmental level (either federal or state). Another question that has to be answered within the current research project is whether there is a certain level of expenditures that triggers several robust outcomes that are inextricably linked to the size of funding. Based on this information, it can be concluded that an extensive analysis of the program’s cost-effectiveness can be required to evaluate a nonprofit organization (Busch & Givens, 2013).

The problem here consists of the uncertainty that revolves around the length of the recovery phase. It is not clear whether the state- or federal-supported investments have a positive impact on the state of affairs within a nonprofit organization (Bendimerad et al., 2015). The researcher expects to answer this question and identify any other types of investments typical of the nonprofit sector that can be useful throughout the recovery process.

The last research area that was identified by the researcher throughout a preliminary literature review is the response reliability of a given nonprofit organization (Chikoto & Neely, 2013). This means that the investigator is interested in evaluating the extent to which a certain nonprofit organization is involved in the processes of disaster management and recovery. This research issue is closely related to the question of return on investments associated with nonprofit organizations. It is safe to say that the issue of finding the most suitable nonprofit organizations has to be investigated further because numerous criteria influence the ultimate success of response and recovery efforts (Bryce, 2017). On a bigger scale, the researcher is keen on scrutinizing the ability of nonprofit organizations to utilize remote investments effectively.

Moreover, it is also substantial to evaluate the ability of a nonprofit organization to handle financial outflows during a natural disaster (Busch & Givens, 2013). In perspective, these features of a nonprofit organization can become the concept of funding accountability. This will certify the organization’s likelihood of success and lead to the creation of an efficient monitoring system that will protect the investments on all three funding levels – local, state, and federal (Bendimerad et al., 2015).

Therefore, the notion of response reliability can be successfully used to assess the efficiency of a nonprofit organization in case if a natural disaster transpires. The factors that impact the overall constellation ability of a nonprofit organization are shaped by the resources that are available to the latter (Peerbolte & Collins, 2012). The problem with this research area consists of the fact that the majority of nonprofit organizations prefer to function without coordination (even though cross-purpose initiatives are in place). If we address the problem of policymaking and conduct an all-inclusive evaluation of a nonprofit organization’s response reliability, we will be able to address the efficiency of its long-term recovery planning (taking into account all the concomitant conditions and recovery fatigue) (Chikoto et al., 2012). The recovery continuum has to be scrutinized to find the sources of reducing the load on the organization.

Description of Relevant Resources

The current proposal should be sponsored for some reasons. First of all, the area of nonprofit corporations and their association with the concept of disaster management is still underresearched. The author of this research project expects to dwell more on the factors that have an impact on nonprofit organizations and predict the most influential contributors. The current proposal needs sponsorship because more and more nonprofit organizations are being victimized by natural disasters without even having a possibility to withstand.

The latter may happen for several reasons (including the unwillingness to resist and inability to come up with a decent disaster management plan within a short period), but the pivotal aspect of this proposal is the impact that nonprofit organizations may have on the topic of disaster management. The author of this proposal believes that they have the required skills to lead the research project as disaster management is their specialization and they have experience in working with other professionals from the area. One of the peculiarities of this research project is that only the most professional disaster management specialists will be involved.

By doing this, the researcher expects to minimize the occurrence of mistakes and mitigate the probable research bias that may have occurred if students or other not-so-knowledgeable individuals were involved. This research project deserves to be elaborated and implemented because it will use the most advanced technologies and the most reliable software. The researcher is certain that having professional staff and powerful technologies will help the team to achieve relevant results and expand the knowledge on the topic of the involvedness of nonprofit organizations in disaster management.


This research has to be conducted by at least ten people where one of them is the project manager, three of them are validating the hypotheses of the study and synthesizing the information that was obtained by the other six participants of the study. These people are expected to have specific disaster management skills and experience in working with the data that the study will be based on. In perspective, the team is expected to review the obtained data and showcase a collaborative effort in terms of discussing the role of nonprofit organizations in disaster management and post-disaster events that may impact the existing state of affairs.

The background of the personnel has to be directly connected to either nonprofit corporations or disaster management strategies because this particular area of research necessitates specific skills to be addressed efficiently. The researcher does not expect to involve any students in the research project unless they possess outstanding skills and their disaster management expertise is flawless. On the other hand, volunteers are welcomed, but their backgrounds will have to be validated. The researcher believes that such strict personnel casting will help reduce the bias that commonly exists in research projects that do not pay enough attention to human resources.


The overall costs of the project cannot be evaluated at this point, but it is possible to estimate the expenditures and present them in the form of a schedule of amounts (see Figure 1). First of all, it is safe to say that we have to consider paying a decent salary to the staff that is involved in the project because all of them are required to have certain skills and knowledge. Moreover, the researcher believes that full-time involvement is not necessary, so the salary will not be going over the top.

The allocation of salary presupposes that data collectors will have the smallest salary and the project manager will have the highest salary due to several responsibilities that make their job position relatively more stressful and demanding. Within the framework of the current research project, it can also be concluded that the researchers will have no option of collaborating online, so they will have to travel to a remote location and combine their efforts there.

This also reveals some additional expenditures which include transportation and the development of an environment suitable for conducting research (a separate facility and several personal computers or laptops that will be used by the staff). It may also turn out that certain software is necessary to run simulations and process the data. The researcher does not expect to involve any students in the research project so researching a school office is not a reliable option. To mitigate the expenses, the researcher will only hire local specialists – in perspective, this will allow them to minimize the costs of the project by spending less money on transportation.

Option Expenses
Data Collector $500 x 6 persons (p) = $3000
Data Processor $750 x 3p = $2250
Project Manager $900 x 1p = $900
Facility Rent $800 x 1 month = $800
Equipment (computers) $600 x 7 items (i) + $800 x 3i = $6600
Software $90 x 1 license = $90
Transportation $2 x 20 days x 8p = $320 Total: $13960

Figure 1. Schedule of amounts.

It is also important to mention that the projected expenses may vary slightly due to several supplementary options that are available to the researcher. For instance, it is possible to cut the equipment costs if the staff agrees to utilize their computers within the framework of this research project. This step will help the researcher to cut costs by almost 50%.


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