Through the recent investment (by many of you) in Team Rubicon’s ability to assist those affected by Hurricane Harvey, we are committing to rebuilding 100 homes in the Texas Gulf Coast.
Some might think this endeavor is a bit of a drop in the bucket against the needs of the more than 100,000+ families affected by the storm. It’s true that we may be addressing a fraction of the need, but we believe it will be meaningful for the 100 low-to-moderate income families. This commitment will also serve as a test to see if Team Rubicon can establish a model to apply in other communities across the country.
To this end, we are approaching this as a pilot and will be launching in Spring of 2018. We are partnering with SBP, who has been a willing partner in sharing process and lessons learned. Leveraging Toyota’s production methodology, SBP strives to increase efficiency in the reconstruction process and get individuals back into homes faster. We’re confident we have a viable approach to this pilot, and we’ll keep you informed of our timeline and milestones, as well as let you know if our assumptions require modification.
Disaster recovery and philanthropy following disaster can be an inequitable process (more to come on this in future blog posts). For example, it’s well understood that media attention following disasters plays a part in determining the amount of philanthropy ultimately directed to affected communities. It’s also recognized that differences in things like insurance coverages, financial assets, and the ability to navigate application processes for services, can all result in varying degrees of recovery. We don’t have the corner on solving this, but we are interested in bending the curve.
As we begin to rebuild homes in Texas, Team Rubicon is also working to develop budgeting and fundraising strategies for the longer term with the hope of providing more equitable services for communities across the country — especially for more localized disasters that gain little to no national media coverage.
Put another way, our aim is to offer the same rebuilding services we’ll provide in Houston to many other survivors — perhaps even a family in a small town where the local creek has overflowed its banks and flooded a small neighborhood. Our goal is to offer that family the same chance at a faster recovery as those we’ll be helping in Houston.