Recipient: Central U.S. HUG (CHUG)
One of the challenges in establishing and sustaining a Hazus-MH User Group (HUG) is to clearly demonstrate to potential members the rewards and benefits of being part of a HUG. The Central U.S. HUG (CHUG) -- under the leadership of The Polis Center in Indiana and member states -- has embarked on a strategy to leverage Hazus-MH training and outreach as a tool for building a strong Hazus constituency in the Midwest.
In 2005, the CHUG formed a Google Group that has greatly facilitated communications and interaction among the membership. With a listserv of over 100 members, the Google Group has become a popular and effective tool for sharing information, projects and initiatives, and lessons learned.
Training has become a second hallmark of the CHUG. The premise is that Hazus training is an excellent way to build awareness and confidence in the Hazus model. With this in mind, The Polis Center has made training a central feature of the CHUG multi-year strategy.
FEMA Region V and member states, particularly Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin, have been active supporters of the CHUG and deserve credit for the success of this user group.
Accepting the HUG Innovation Award for Training and Outreach on behalf of the CHUG is Kevin Mickey, GSIP, Director, Professional Education and Outreach, The Polis Center.