ICF International Pro Bono COOP Exercise Highlights the Need for All Organizations to Prepare for Catastrophic Disasters
Lessons Learned on Preparedness Apply to Organizations of All Sizes
Fairfax, Virginia, March 27, 2007 -
Through its subsidiary, ICF Incorporated, LLC, ICF International (NASDAQ: ICFI) administered a pro bono Continuity of Operations (COOP) tabletop exercise at The Children’s Inn at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a private, nonprofit, family-centered residence for pediatric outpatients and their families. The exercise, which included a facilitated discussion focusing on both the immediate response and the ability of the facility to identify, prioritize, and keep essential business functions running in the event of a natural catastrophic disaster, drew attention to the need for local, state, and federal governments as well as nonprofits, small businesses, and multibillion dollar corporations alike to apply crucial resources toward business continuity in preparing for all hazards, including pandemics and terrorist attacks.
“The decision to provide our expertise to ensure the continuation of services to The Children’s Inn at NIH was an easy one. Its mission—to provide no-cost lodging and meals to children and their families while undergoing treatment at NIH—is one that we admire,” said Anita Tallarico, an ICF senior vice president and expert in emergency preparedness. “Business and government leaders should also be conscious of the larger lessons learned from this exercise, specifically, the importance of organizations of all sizes and types recognizing the critical need for disaster preparedness, COOP planning, and exercises similar to this one.”
In the event that an organization is impacted by a disaster, whether natural, technological, or manmade, it is essential that the organization be able to continue performing critical functions upon which clients and citizens are dependent. Disasters can impact the organization’s facilities and infrastructure or, in the case of a pandemic, the availability of personnel and resources. According to Federal Preparedness Circular (FPC) 65, prepared by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, “a viable and executable contingency plan needs be in place during an incident situation where normal operations are disrupted. COOP planning ensures the performance of agency/department critical functions.”
“We are tremendously grateful for the job performed pro bono by ICF at assessing our emergency readiness plans,” said Kathy L. Russell, chief executive officer of The Children's Inn at NIH. “ICF went above and beyond our expectations and provided us with critical insight about the tools and resources we need to have in place in order to be prepared in the event of a disaster. Seeing the outcomes of this exercise made it evident that this type of simulation can help organizations of all sizes prepare better for unplanned incidences.”
About The Children's Inn at NIH
The Children's Inn at NIH is a nonprofit “place like home” for sick children and their families participating in groundbreaking therapies at the world's premier biomedical research center, NIH. Children come from across the country and around the world to stay together in a healing environment at The Children's Inn. While NIH takes care of the child’s medical needs, The Inn tends to the child’s heart, soul, and spirit. At the end of a long day of pokes and prods at the hospital, kids come home to The Inn just to be kids—to paint a picture with mom, read a book with dad, or just hang out with siblings or friends.
About ICF International
ICF International (NASDAQ: ICFI) partners with government and commercial clients to deliver consulting services and technology solutions in the energy, environment, transportation, social programs, defense, and homeland security markets. The firm combines passion for its work with industry expertise and innovative analytics to produce compelling results throughout the entire program life cycle, from analysis and design through implementation and improvement. Since 1969, ICF has been serving government at all levels, major corporations, and multilateral institutions. More than 2,000 employees serve these clients worldwide. ICF’s Web site is http://www.icfi.com.
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