May 2, 2011
Bill Taylor, EDPA President
In economic development we are quick to tout the state’s work force – its people – as one of Alabama’s greatest advantages. Time and again I have witnessed that as a reality since I came to this state nearly 20 years ago.
When tragedy strikes, as it did last week when devastating storms hit the state, the people of Alabama immediately rise to the challenge. Moments after the storm, neighbors emerged to provide help where able. And a short time after tornadoes ripped through several communities throughout the state, Alabamians mobilized to provide care, comfort, shelter and supplies to help their neighbors through the crisis. Employees reached out to fellow employees, and many local industries and businesses mobilized assistance teams to aid stricken communities.
Based on my experience over the years, that will not end with the immediate response to the storms’ aftermath. They will be there each step of the way as fellow Alabamians most affected by the disaster work to rebuild their communities and recover from the greatest tragedy of all – the loss of family and friends.
Resilience is defined as the ability to recover quickly from setbacks. Last week, all of us in Alabama experienced a calamity of epic proportions. In the weeks and months ahead, a resilience that I’ve come to realize is a distinctive Alabama trait will be on display for the nation and the world to see as the state’s people help one another to recover. We work best together when we work as a team, and this is no exception. Together, we will work towards recovery.
If you would like to be part of the team for recovery, please reference the EDPA website, as we will be posting a listing of agencies working to address needs, and the types of support requested. For example, donations can be made through the United Way of West Alabama – http://www.uwwa.org/; the United way of Central Alabama – http://www.uwca.org/; and the Governor’s Emergency Relief Fund – http://www.servealabama.gov/governorsfund2.