The Neighbors Helping Neighbors Project aims to build resilient, disaster prepared, communities

Lake County, California - North Coast Opportunities (NCO) is pleased to announce the launch of “Neighbors Helping Neighbors (NHN)” in partnership with California Volunteers, Office of the Governor. This grant funded project will support hyper local communities around the lake by hosting various events to increase social cohesion within neighborhoods, empowering their capacity for resiliency in times of disaster. Examples of upcoming events are Neighborfest, Firewise Councils, Climate Safe Lake Focus Groups, and Neighborhood Actions Days.  

Disaster can strike quickly and without warning, sometimes isolating entire neighborhoods. NHN events will build stronger, more resilient neighborhoods by creating opportunities for neighbors to connect, have fun, create trust, and become better prepared to overcome life’s storms.

Ten neighborhoods have been prioritized for the NHN project. Tammy Alakszay NCO’s Neighbors Helping Neighbors Project Manager explains that “neighborhoods were chosen based on multiple factors, such as, access to services, current resources from partner agencies, the potential for isolation in time of disaster, and the existence of community members willing to serve as local leaders for their neighborhoods.” Alakszay hopes that one of the sustained effects of the project will be the development of more Firewise and Firesafe communities in Lake County. 

NHN’s official kick off is Saturday, April 15, 2023, with the Konocti Bay Neighborfest at Galilee Lutheran Church. The pilot event will introduce Galilee’s Resiliency Hub as a resource for times of non-evacuation disaster for this neighborhood, where no other Community Based Organizations are located.  

Neighborfest is part of the Resilient Neighborhoods Network, a community powered framework for resilience and engagement modeled after San Francisco's Neighborhood Empowerment Network and the Neighbor-to-Neighbor concept of preparedness as a shared responsibility. In a disaster you and your neighbors may be the only resource until help arrives. Research has shown that the more connected neighbors are to each other, the stronger their resilience is before, during, and after an emergency.  

Partners for the project include but are not limited to NCO, the American Red Cross, Middletown Rancheria of Pomo Indians, LCOE, North Shore Fire Fund and hyper local partners such as Galilee Lutheran Church, Scott’s Valley Neighbors, Wolf Creek Firewise Community, among others. Shannon Kimbell-Auth with the American Red Cross Community Adaptation Program observed, “It’s exciting to be part of this project because responding to disaster is a team effort. In Lake County we have a pretty amazing team.” 

To learn more about Neighbors Helping Neighbors contact Tammy Alakszay at 707.998.8643 or

NCO is the Community Action Agency that serves Lake and Mendocino Counties, as well as parts of Humboldt, Sonoma, Del Norte, and Solano Counties. NCO reacts and adjusts to community needs, including disaster response and recovery. For more information visit or call (707) 467-3200.

Led by California Chief Service Officer Josh Fryday, California Volunteers, Office of the Governor empowers Californians to take action to improve their communities.

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