This week is National Hurricane Preparedness Week, which is well-timed, because this week is also the first week of hurricane season. If you live in a place prone to hurricanes (or any natural disasters), or you’re just looking to help out, take a look at Microsoft’s HelpBridge app, which puts a lot of tools centered around natural disaster preparation and response in one place.
HelpBridge, which debuted last year, lets you send out quick messages over SMS, Twitter, and Facebook to pre-designated contacts. The app can also transmit your location using GPS to those same contacts – either way, your family and friends will know you’re OK, and that’s the main thing. And, if you can transmit messages, but need help, you’ll be able to mark yourself as in need of help using GPS, as well.
Microsoft recently released an update to HelpBridge, which introduces a cleaner UI and push notifications. If you don’t find yourself in the way of nature, you can still use the app to find out which organizations are leading relief efforts in hard-hit areas, so you can do what you can to help. You can even use the app to find volunteer opportunities.
HelpBridge is available for free for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone.