The Middle Peninsula Planning District Commission, as part of its programming to support regional businesses with technical assistance and training programs, provided small business owners and budding entrepreneurs a virtual disaster planning training program that highlights resources and best practices necessary to sustain business resilience.

Resilience in a Box” is available to watch online here.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation designed the program in partnership with The UPS Foundation. The tools provided lead any type of business through the steps of disaster preparedness — a topic almost any business can relate to after more than a year of weathering the COVID-19 pandemic.

Only one-third of businesses have a plan in place in the event of a major disaster, such as a long-term power outage, a cybersecurity breach or a hurricane. “Resilience in a Box” is a collection of tips, best practices and checklists businesses should follow to be proactive in planning should disaster strike.

The virtual training program introduces this resiliency training to businesses and provides information about how to dig deeper.

Christy Morton emcees the program. Morton, a Gloucester-native and Vice President of External Affairs for the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), manages VEDP’s relationships with the General Assembly, Gov. Northam’s administration and Virginia’s congressional delegation.

Resilience in a Box” is categorized into three levels: Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced. Businesses will be introduced to each level so that they can determine and address potential vulnerabilities in working toward a Business Continuity Plan to minimize risk

Research indicates that 43% of small-to-medium businesses fail after a disaster and another 25% of businesses that reopen will fail within two years given lack of disaster preparation.

The Middle Peninsula Planning District Commission is one of 21 planning commissions in Virginia charged with promoting the orderly and efficient development of the physical, social and economic elements of the district. This virtual training program is being presented thanks to funding from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program.

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