The Frew Group
Inclusion - Diversity - Equity - Accessibility - Sustainability - Cultural Competence
Our emergency management consulting firm, founded on the principles of equity and inclusion, will help you create disaster-resilient communities for the “whole community.” We work with you to successfully ensure that your community’s populations, many of whom are disproportionately impacted by natural hazards, impacts of climate change, and long-standing marginalized social practices, are equitable served.
We believe disaster plans, operations, and communications must be designed—and operationalized—to prioritize the safety of the diverse members of your most vulnerable populations. Building cultural competency in emergency planning and crisis management requires an informed, strategic approach crafted to your community’s unique socio-cultural profile. Community resilience is built upon Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Sustainability (IDEAS).
You carry a heavy responsibility for the health and safety of the lives of many diverse people and many high-risk populations. We help you fulfill your public safety mission and commitment that no one is left behind.
Our Emergency Management Consulting Services
Translate planning content, organizational concerns, and vision into an accessible, easy-to-use planning tool. We provide subject matter expertise and technical assistance to assist clients in visioning, facilitating, and crafting locally-inspired, sustainable plans, protocols, and guidance documents.
Cutting-edge workshops for Inclusion, Equity, and Accessibility for Highly Diverse Communities at Risk
As the leader and principal consultant of The Frew Group, Suzanne Frew steps outside the run-of-the-mill workshop and training frameworks. Her innovative workshops for inclusive emergency and crisis management provide workshop participants with the skills, knowledge, and abilities to meet the needs of historically disadvantaged, underserved, and marginalized populations.
The workshop builds the capacity to understand equity and inclusion principles and their skills to implement them in real-world situations.
The value of inclusion, equity, accessibility, and cultural competency has long been recognized academically and theoretically but the practical nuts and bolts of how to operationalize cultural competency in the field of emergency management and disaster response have continued to challenge those responsible for public safety and lag behind – until now.
Human-centered design to engage and collaborate with whole communities
Our team uses human-centered design thinking, an inclusive and people-centered approach, to create a process for creative problem-solving. Human-centered design (HCD) is a framework that develops solutions to problems by involving the human perspective in the steps of the problem-solving process. It focuses on creating empathy-informed, not cookie-cutter, solutions.
The process, advocated by the Stanford d.school at Stanford University and other innovative organizations, focuses on observing the problem within context (if possible), brainstorming, conceptualizing, developing, iterating (to test the waters!), and implementing a culturally sound solution. Human dignity and access are key.
We build “creative confidence,” establish context and tell a story to bring people into it, empower them to relate to it, and get them to engage.
Cross-cultural communications bring people together
Often cultural differences cause miscommunication or breakdowns in the communication process between emergency services and the diverse communities they serve during a disaster. Shifting social demographics, language differences, cultural understanding, and other factors often create barriers to effectively serving people who are at the greatest risk. The challenge is that we often do not see things as the way they are; we see things as the way we are.
The Frew Group helps you and your team work through accessibility challenges to better reach individuals with disabilities, more effectively translate messages into multiple languages, and craft innovative approaches to reach those with limited digital access, the unhoused, undocumented immigrants, and many other groups that are often at high risk for not receiving timely, culturally inclusive and understandable, alerts and warnings and preparedness messages.
We expand on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion to help you see blind spots in Cultural Communication
Creating and operationalizing inclusive emergency management programs that are solidly rooted in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) practices and procedures ensures that you meet your organizational mission of providing public safety for all diverse populations—the whole community. It also fosters an environment where every person on your team and those you serve feels included, seen, and treated equally.
This means not just giving every person a seat at the table but giving them a voice and equal opportunities to succeed – in their job, in their resilience building, and when a disaster happens, equal opportunity to recover.
As Cultural Bridge Builders, The Frew Group brings to your organization a deep understanding (not lip service) of cultural competency, specifically in the profession of risk and hazards, resilience building, and emergency management. They deliver a hands-on experience with easy-to-understand tools and processes to help you create policy, plan for, deliver services, and communicate with your most vulnerable diverse, at-risk individuals.
Deeply experienced - highly trusted
The Frew Group offers clients a unique expertise offered by very few consultants – expertise in the intersection between climate change and disaster risk to disproportionately impacted, high-risk populations.
Suzanne and her associates apply their deep bench of knowledge and extensive experience working with leaders from communities throughout the United States, island territories, tribal nations, and throughout the world. They have spent decades serving public and private sector clients alike. All have extensive backgrounds as planning consultants, trainers, speakers, and exercise facilitators addressing diversity and racial equity, climate adaptation for emergency management, and building community resilience.
Our clients demonstrate the true meaning of diverse populations.
What people say about The Frew Group:
Suzanne’s 30+ years in the emergency management profession specializing in inclusion, equity, cross-cultural communications, and cultural competency makes her uniquely positioned as one of the top consultants in this field of emergency management.
Her passion for people, along with a natural gift of deep human connection and understanding, make her a go-to advisor, trainer, and instructor for cultural competency and for addressing the challenging issues of disproportionately impacted, diverse communities at risk.
Starting her career as a federal Public Information Officer, she has worked with public and private teams to address communications, business continuity, and hazard mitigation in response to some of the most challenging domestic and international disasters.
During blue sky days, she has developed national, state, and local level policy and plans and trained leaders and their teams to operationalize equity and inclusion in their programs and communications.
Suzanne is a unique Cultural Bridge Builder with mastery to detect and interpret the subtleties that often go unnoticed in emergency management practices and disaster planning. She ensures no person is left behind due to blind spots in cultural practices and communication.