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Preparing Alaska's Cultural Organizations for Emergencies

A training program open to Alaska's collecting institutions.

About the Program

Earthquakes, wildfires, eruptions, and water leaks-- disasters both great and small befall Alaska cultural organizations. Through the Preparing Alaska's Cultural Organizations for Emergencies (PACO) program, staff at collecting institutions across Alaska can access training and coaching resources that will enhance our disaster preparedness and resiliency.

From 2021-2022, LAM will lead a comprehensive emergency training program for three cohorts of participants. The training program includes the following:

  1. A four-month online course that guides participants through creating an institutional disaster plan.
  2. A coach assigned to each participating institution who will provide additional support and mentoring to boost participant success.
  3. A three day, hands-on workshop dedicated to disaster recovery conducted at a regional fire training center. 

Thanks to a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, participation in the PACO program is free of charge for staff and/or key volunteers at cultural organizations. This includes travel to the workshop. 

The PACO program taps into nationally-recognized emergency training programs like Finding Common Ground, connects with instructors and coaches experienced in disaster planning and response, and brings together a wide variety of collecting institutions and agencies so that together we can build the capacity of Alaska's cultural organizations to be prepared for and respond to emergencies. 

Program Dates

Participants must enroll in one of the following online courses:

  • Cohort A: February 25- June 24, 2021. Class will meet on Thursdays from 10-11 AM
  • Cohort B: August 25- December 15, 2021. Class will be on Wednesdays from 10-11 AM
  • Cohort C: January 19- May 11, 2022. Class will be on Wednesdays from 10-11 AM. The application deadline is December 20, 2021.

Participants will also attend one of the following workshops (all dates subject to change):

  • May 24-26, 2022 in Juneau
  • September 2022 (Fairbanks)
  • November 2022 (Anchorage)

*Participants are encouraged to enroll in the workshop that is closest to their home community regardless of their cohort selection.


To take part in the PACO program participants must:

  1. Receive the support of their director to take part in the program and to engage their institution in disaster planning.
  2. Commit to finalizing an institutional disaster plan by the end of the four-month online course.
  3. Come from a non-profit organization or governmental institution with original humanities collections. Such materials include museum collections, archival materials (photographs, manuscripts, audio recordings, etc.), rare books, or essential government records.
  4. Have reliable internet access.

Seal of the National Endowment for the Humanities

The Preparing Alaska's Cultural Organizations for Emergencies Program has been made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Democracy demands wisdom.