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Investing in resilience

April 23, 2014

Why investing in sustainable infrastructure can mean the difference between sink and survival for communities and businesses.

Head of Marketing, Distribution and Regional Management

Randall Clouser is the Head of Marketing, Distribution and Regional Management for Zurich North... About this expert

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It’s hard to believe that Hurricane Katrina made landfall in New Orleans nearly a decade ago. But, with some hard work and lots of dedicated people who believe in building resilient communities, the city has made some serious strides.

This April, Zurich North America, Schaumburg, Ill., is hosting its 10th Annual Zurich Classic golf tournament in New Orleans. The tournament brings the city about $30 million every year.

After Katrina, the tournament really symbolized that the city was back. It was the first major sporting event post Katrina, and I think that had a big emotional lift to the city as well.

Since 2009, Zurich has also been involved in the philanthropic efforts of the St. Bernard Project, an organization dedicated to rebuilding the homes of Katrina survivors. They’ve built nearly 50 homes in devastated areas across the country. 

This year, Z Zurich Foundation is donating a $3 million grant to the St. Bernard Project to create a disaster resilience and recovery lab (a strategic plan, not a physical structure) and provide support to a variety of U.S. disaster recovery efforts, including home rebuilding projects in Staten Island, N.Y., and Joplin, Mo.

“Disasters are occurring more frequently and storms are getting stronger,” says Zack Rosenburg, Co-Founder and CEO of the St. Bernard Project. “This investment will enable us to do more for communities before a natural disaster strikes, and ensure that impacted areas have access to proven-effective best practices to recover in a prompt, efficient, and predictable manner.”

How’s that for supporting resilient communities?

Watch how Zurich is investing in New Orleans.

Investing in Resilience

From a personal level, dealing with the loss of loved ones or a home, to a professional level of handling the losses that may have impacted your business, any natural disaster can wreak havoc on your life … especially when you don’t have a sustainable infrastructure in your community to rely on.

According to an article by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, “Communities with sustainable livelihoods, good levels of health care, and access to a strong and accountable civil society are less susceptible to hazards and are faster to recover.”

So, how do we create a more sustainable community? The answer is often “with investment.” Starting with governments all the way down to individual businesses, design teams and urban planners, we are all responsible for creating more sustainable and likewise resilient communities for when disaster strikes.

In fact, many governments and companies have jumped on investing in sustainability, making it a “megatrend” by several studies. G-20 governments have even earmarked some $400 billion of their $2.6 trillion in stimulus funds for sustainability programs in past years.

Whether you choose to revamp your own business practices or monetarily invest in storm-specific areas, the main objective is to build resilient communities and resilient businesses with the intention of equipping that area with as much backing as possible in anticipation of (sometimes super scary) Mother Nature.

Learn more here.

The information in this publication was compiled from sources believed to be reliable for informational purposes only. All sample policies and procedures herein should serve as a guideline, which you can use to create your own policies and procedures. We trust that you will customize these samples to reflect your own operations and believe that these samples may serve as a helpful platform for this endeavor. Any and all information contained herein is not intended to constitute advice (particularly not legal advice). Accordingly, persons requiring advice should consult independent advisors when developing programs and policies. We do not guarantee the accuracy of this information or any results and further assume no liability in connection with this publication and sample policies and procedures, including any information, methods or safety suggestions contained herein. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any of this information, whether to reflect new information, future developments, events or circumstances or otherwise. Moreover, Zurich reminds you that this cannot be assumed to contain every acceptable safety and compliance procedure or that additional procedures might not be appropriate under the circumstances. The subject matter of this publication is not tied to any specific insurance product nor will adopting these policies and procedures ensure coverage under any insurance policy.

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