Griffin Works offers Pawsitive Interactions with Service Dogs During Response Operations©, an audience-customized training that breaks down barriers by offering hands-on handling training and demonstrations with working service dogs for fire departments, EMS agencies, and public safety organizations.

Part of the National Domestic Preparedness Consortium and home to the National Emergency Response and Recovery Training Center, TEEX has been leading homeland security training since 1998. The major TEEX programs include fire and rescue, infrastructure and safety, law enforcement, economic and workforce development, and homeland security. As a member of The Texas A&M University System, TEEX is unique in its ability to access a broad range of emerging research and technical expertise. Beginning with course design and development all the way through hands-on instruction and national certification testing, TEEX delivers comprehensive training through both classroom and hands-on instruction and as online courses.

The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) was created by Congress in 2000 as part of the Children’s Health Act to raise the standard of care and increase access to services for children and families who experience or witness traumatic events. This unique network of child-serving professionals, caregivers and young adults, researchers, and national partners is committed to changing the course of children’s lives by improving their care and moving scientific gains quickly into practice across the U.S. The NCTSN is administered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and coordinated by the UCLA-Duke University National Center for Child Traumatic Stress (NCCTS). 

The Emergency Management Institute (EMI) is part of the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The EMI provides national leadership in developing and delivering training to ensure that individuals and groups having key emergency management responsibilities possess the requisite skills to effectively perform their jobs.

The High Alert Institute maintains a list of reviewed courses provided by governments, universities and professional organizations. This list is geared towards the non-emergency management person who participates in disaster planning, preparedness, response, recovery or mitigation as part of their job responsibilities.

The High Alert Institute has partnered with Shutterstock to distribute stock images from the nature images donated by our supporters. For eligible stock images, Shutterstock will donate a portion of the royalty to the High Alert Institute. There is no cost to charitable organizations or to Shutterstock customers.

For eligible purchases through AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price to the High Alert Institute. There is no cost to charitable organizations or to AmazonSmile customers. All you need to do is push the SMILE NOW button and select to support THE HIGH ALERT INSTITUTE on AmazonSmile.

Koi need forever homes, too! For pond enthusiasts, freshwater exotic and ornamental fish may not be available through pet stores or rescues in their area. The High Alert Institute Aquatic Pet Shelter Rehoming Program will be happy to assist you in stocking your new pond or adding a new finned friend to your school. Coming soon – when you adopt a Koi from the High Alert Institute Aquatic Pet Shelter Rehoming Program, we can arrange for delivery to your door anywhere in the continental United States.

Have you always wanted a Koi pond but don’t have the space one? Sponsor a Koi in our community shelter pond and we send you photos of your sponsored animal. Coming soon are live Koi Cameras above and below the water to enjoy your sponsored Koi anytime.

Dumping of freshwater non-native species and exotic aquatic pets into wild habitats is a man-made disaster that is truly preventable. The Institute’s Aquatic Pet Welfare Partnership works to raise awareness and reduce the impact on healthy ecosystems through education, as well as rescue and rehoming. Joined by champions of animal welfare and environmental stewardship, this  association of aquatic pet rescue operations and aquatic pet shelters across the United States aims to save our finned friends and preserve our waterways together.

Want to share our cause with family, friends, and colleagues? Looking for a non-traditional way to celebrate a birthday or honor someone special? Support the Institute by starting your own Peer-to-Peer fundraising challenge! Let your contacts know why our mission is important to you and what they can do to support your cause. START YOUR OWN FUNDRAISER for the High Alert Institute.

From the staffing pool to the shelter ponds, from the boardroom to the classroom, and from reading the science to writing the analyses, High Alert Institute programs and services benefit from the experience, expertise, and generosity of our volunteers. Put your talents to use for good and to good use – VOLUNTEER TODAY.

Make your donation twice as nice by rehoming aquatic pets and providing a rehabilitation companion pet to a deserving person, family, or facility. Sponsor part or all of a Joy of Koi Program pond installation – complete with rehomed koi – and give the gifts of love and recovery.

Professional photographers, amateurs, and legal copywrite holders are all welcome to participate in the High Alert Institute Nature Photo Donation Program. Sales of the images benefit the Institute and donors are eligible for tax deductions equivalent to the fair market value of their photos. Landscapes, seascapes, animals, flowers – all may be accepted – whether new or vintage  images. People may be included in the photo but only if unidentifiable (i.e., blurred figures at a distance).

Did you know that unused patents and copyrights can be donated to charity? Intellectual Property (IP) just sitting on a shelf will lose value as it becomes obsolete. The High Alert Institute IP Donation Program seeks to rescue stranded, technology-related IP with the potential for development into marketable products. Once accepted by the program, the owner/inventor is eligible for a tax deduction equivalent to the fair market value of the IP. The Institute receives the patent licensing fees or revenue from the sale of the IP to businesses, helping us to fund our mission. In turn, businesses are able to advance their markets and create jobs for less money than starting a project from scratch.

Disasters are defined as situations in which needs exceed or overwhelm available resources. Some disasters affect an entire community, while other disasters impact individuals and families. Crises of physical or psychological health can be very personal disasters.
The therapeutic value of pets during illness, trauma, and recovery is well established. And Koi fish may be well suited for people who are not able to provide verbal pet commands or physically care for pets like dogs and cats. Koi ponds are also a source of beauty and peace, providing an ideal setting for quiet reflection or meditation.
We are working to partner with pond installers and aquatic pet rescues/shelters to offer free or reduced-cost ponds with rehomed Koi fish to people seeking this type of pet therapy.

Disasters disrupt life and impact our sense of personal, family, and community safety. Survivors and responders alike often are not aware of the emotional, psychological or spiritual challenges that they may face from disaster onset through recovery. With two decades of experience training responders and communities to prepare for the behavioral health aspects of disasters, we will continue to provide education and a curated list of resources to groups or individuals.

Non-medical factors that impact overall health are termed Social Determinants of Health or SDoH. Noise pollution, poor air quality, and poor water quality are three environmental factors known to have a strong link to overall health. And the same environmental factors that impact humans impact their pets and other animals in their care. We continue to assist in advocacy, education, and technology development to mitigate the impact of SDoH on humans and animals alike.

Our efforts in shelter and rescue are the main focus of our environmental stewardship, reducing the environmental impact of non-native aquatic animals being dumped into public waterways. The High Alert Institute also assists innovators with the design, development, and evaluation of green and renewable energy technologies. Reducing the carbon footprint associated with disaster preparedness, response, and recovery furthers our continued mission to mitigate risk and improve resilience.

We partner with public and private organizations, sharing resources and fostering partnerships to improve disaster preparedness, response, and recovery, and mitigation.

The High Alert Institute team has over a century of combined research experience in medical, nursing, behavioral health, and disaster sciences. Our team provides support to researchers and technology developers through comprehensive literature searches and reviews, as well as failure mode database searches and adjudicated reviews.

When disaster strikes, most aquatic pet owners have limited options to secure the safety of their pets. Sheltering in place may not be possible if there is no power to provide aeration and “pet-friendly” shelters do not include ponds or aquariums. Our goal is to provide an option for aquatic pet owners in need of rescue and shelter for their finned friends.

Our goal is to share our two decades of disaster readiness experience with animal welfare organizations, shelters, caretakers, and pet owners, as they implement contingency  plans for natural and manmade disasters.

High Alert Institute



Filling the Canteen of Relationship Resilience

by | Jan 22, 2007

Keeping the relationship canteen full is more than just accumulating friends and acquaintances.  The relationship canteen is filled by the richness of those relationships and the connectedness created through the friendships and family.


It is said that a person with friends is never truly alone and when your resilience is tested a full relationship canteen is proof of that statement. Jim Cathcart, the guru of relationships and business ( has made a career teaching the nation’s CEO’s, Executives, Elite Sales People and Entrepreneurs to create business success and business resilience by paying attention to both sides of a relationship, you and your relationship partner. His books and seminars are sold worldwide and have been the basis for some of the most successful sales campaigns in recent history. In short, the idea of relationship resilience is not new.


In my life I am fortunate to be blessed with a wonderful marriage.  My wife, Laura, is intelligent, caring, compassionate, supportive and beautiful.  She is a fantastic mother and my best friend. Laura is absolutely supportive of me in everything that I do.  Not only my disaster response work but my everyday life, my beliefs (even when she disagrees with them), my dreams, my goals, and even my desires. Laura and I share a relationship that is special and in modern society increasingly rare.


Because I strive for physical preparedness both in body and in resources we maintain family preparedness in the same realms.  We have a family plan in the event of an emergency and each of my children, as well as Laura, are well versed in every aspect of that plan.  I know that I can count on Laura to keep the family safe no matter where I may go, what kind of disaster I respond to, what may befall them in my absence, or even in the event that I should never be able to return home.


When I must call upon my resilience, I have a full relationship canteen.  Not only does my marital relationship contribute to this reserve, to this relationship resilience, but I have similar relationships with each of my four children and with my mother.  What is more, even though my father is now deceased, my relationship with him remains a source of relationship resilience.  I know that he is proud of me for the work that I do.


This limitless source of renewing strength ensures that I am able to endure and ultimately overcome any challenge ahead of me.


But relationships are a two edged sword when it comes to resilience.


Several years ago my younger daughter Tiffany suffered challenges of her own and I was away to assist in response and recovery for a declared national disaster. As a result of Tiffany’s hospitalization my resilience was seriously compromised.  


I was conflicted.  


I was physically strong and physically prepared.  I had all of the equipment and resources I needed to perform my disaster response duties.  But the challenges facing somebody who I cared about caused my relationship resilience to suffer significantly.  Rather than being a source of strength my need and desire to be home caring for my daughter sapped my strength.  I was no longer sipping from my canteen of resilience.  I was gulping deeply.  My 40,000-gallon bathtub had sprung a leak.  


The fact that I could do nothing even if I were at her side did not make a difference in how badly her needs affected my resilience.  The fact that I would not even be allowed to be at her side in the first week of her hospitalization did not change the impact of her needs on my resilience. 


Relationship resilience is not only important to those of us in the disaster field office. A major jewelry retailer saw both sides of relationship resilience. In 2003, a member of the corporate C-suite developed cancer. The diagnosis was made early and the company rallied behind their stricken leader. 


Surgery, radiation and chemotherapy drove the illness into full remission and it looked like a celebration of a cure might even be in the offing. Throughout the illness, the executive drew strength from her resilience in all its forms. She was an inspiration to the company’s employees as she came back to work and assumed the reigns of leadership with full vigor.


Then she relapsed.


It had been two years since her illness and the recurrence of cancer hit hard. Not only was there the emotional blow of having cancer again, but the physical rigors of new and stronger chemotherapy. The company and its employees again rallied to her side, but this time resilience waned, the relationship resilience could not fill the void left by the loss of emotional and physical resilience. 


Again the company stood by their stricken leader and again she returned to the reigns of power, but this time she had no vigor. Soon her executive assistant was her nurse and her Senior Vice President had been placed in a shadow leadership position. Confusion ruled the day as each division tried to follow two often divergent business directions. Finally, the board had had enough. They wanted to stand by a loyal career executive, but the stock price was falling and the industry wolves were preparing for the attack. The Senior VP assumed full control and the ill executive made a graceful exit.


Relationships are a two-edged sword for resilience but this does not mean that we should limit our relationships based on their potential impact.  Quite to the contrary it means that we should expand our relationships. Make them as deep and rich as possible and share in providing for the resilience of those of whom we care most deeply. Are you growing relationships that fill your Canteen of Relationship Resilience?


(Excerpted from my lecture series and book: Avoiding Business Disasters: Lessons from the Disaster Field Office)

Join the Institute
Stay informed and get updates.

*We do NOT share your information with any other sites or organizations.

High Alert Institute

4800 Ben Hill Trail
Lake Wales, FL 33898
Office: 863.696.8090
FAX: 407.434.0804

Privacy Policy

Cookie Policy

Terms of Use


Get Your Data

Shipping Policy

Message Us



Do Not Sell Info

Return Policy