In many neighborhoods the residents believe that if a disaster strikes, other people will take care of them. This may or may not be true. If they don’t know their neighbors at all, who will they ask for help?

In this FEMA PrepTalk, Dr. Daniel Aldrich explains how social ties are the critical aspect of resilience in immediate survival, in mental health, and in community recovery. Despite common assumptions that money, governance, level of damage, and inequality are the most important determinants of recovery, Aldrich demonstrates that “disaster resilience comes from internal factors: How connected are we? How much trust do we have in each other? How often do we work together?” Aldrich has studied disasters around the world and is the author of four published books, including Building Resilience: Social Capital in Post-Disaster Recovery.