EDS Website for Smarties and Braniacs

February 14, 2011 - 3:45 PM EST
Christie Sutton
christie_sutton@uss.salvationarmy.org
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EDS Website for Smarties and Braniacs

The Salvation Army’s new national Emergency Disaster Services website has been the rave of the nation since our public launch on January 1st!  Maybe I should rephrase “rave” as this may be a bit of an overstatement, but the comments we are receiving from our users are very positive, and have provoked this EDS writer to highlight the best of the site in a feature story.

Available for Smarties everywhere, here a few of our noteworthy new accomplishments.

Up to the hour disaster press releases from across the nation. When the Army responds to an incident you can be the first to know.  Our public information officers keep the public informed on every size event that impacts individuals and places them in need.  If you are looking for information on a past event, search and sort through all Disaster News pieces under the Multimedia tab.

The story of The Salvation Army and Emergency Disaster Services.  If you want to know more about The Salvation Army, find our About tab and check out our informative, pictorial slide shows.  The history of the Army is fascinating and inspiring, and we love sharing it with you.

Your local Salvation Army.  Notice the big high-tech map at the bottom of our home page?  If you click your state, you’ll be taken to a page with contact information for your closest Divisional Headquarters, Divisional Disaster Director and Public Information Officer.  Some pages will even detail the types and numbers of resources they have in their disaster response arsenal.  The friendly folks highlighted in this divisional capacity overview will assist you in getting in touch with the local Army in your town.

Training. We in disaster services believe so strongly in training that we’ve given it its own tab on our home page!  Check out Disaster Courses for those included in The Salvation Army’s National Disaster Training Program, as well as some offered by partner agencies.  If these excite you, then drop down on the Training tab menu to Upcoming Classes and search our list of classes being taught in your region.

Podcasts. Not all education happens in a classroom, and Salvation Army Disaster Radio has brought to our audience over 55 disaster field reports, expert interviews and a hefty teaching series on the Incident Command positions.  Join others who have downloaded nearly 13,000 podcasts.  Go to the Multimedia tab and choose Disaster Radio.

Twitter link. If you want to know when a new story or podcast is posted to the website, sign up to receive our SalArmyEDS Tweets!  The Twitter icon is found at the top right corner of the homepage. 

There are smarties and then there are braniacs.  Smarties are folks so intelligent that they spend time on our national EDS website.  Braniacs jump a level higher, decide to fill out an online profile and become a disaster worker the The Salvation Army. 

Some perks reserved for Braniacs!

Online disaster worker profile.  If you’ve ever had to fill out a multitude of forms about yourself again and again, or even wait for weeks as someone else enters your personal information into a database, then get excited.  By creating a profile, you can create and edit your personal information anytime.  Moved?  Edit your address yourself.  Inherited a new skill?  Tell us about it on your profile.  The only information reserved for administrators to input is your completed training classes which you will find on your profile. Join our team!

Helpful resource documents. Under our Resources Tab, you’ll find our Document Library and we mean business.  We’re still adding documents every day, but here you can find reference materials, policy and standard documents, job descriptions, presentations and day to day forms.  These are what the professionals use - handle with care!

Course repository.  Finally, a special mention should go to our highly regarded EDS instructors who are the heart and soul of our National Disaster Training Program.  We’ve given instructors their own page where they can download materials for every course they are approved to teach.  No more shipping CDs and flash drives across the country or messing with awkward ftp sites.  Go to Training Documents for all of your instructor needs.

There are too many features of the site to mention in one article and some have been left out, like our informative pages on how to donate or give to The Salvation Army, our Canteen Cookbook and more social media links.  If you stroll through the site, you should find dozens of treasures.

Perhaps most importantly, you can send us an email to let us know what you like most about the site and how we can make it better.  Whether you’re a Smartie or a Braniac, be sure to find the “Contact Us” button on the home page and let’s keep in touch.

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