Allison's Story

I am the founder of Terra Frma. Having lived in Oregon for over 30 years, I've always been ready for wildfire season. Or so I thought.

In 2014, there was a wildfire near our home that was too close for comfort. We were constantly driving up the hill to see how close it was getting and were trying to make sense of how to protect our home from flying embers.

The sky was beautiful and concerning. One minute we were marveling at the colors and the next we were right back atop the hill looking at the two plumes. What was I supposed to do? What was I supposed to pack? How would I know if we needed to evacuate? Was I supposed to get the irrigation going all over the house or was that futile? And why was I only thinking of these things now?

I had a million questions and few answers in one place. I focused on calming my nerves and then sat down to make a plan. I was frustrated by how many places I had to go online to find answers and made a decision to get my family as prepared as possible "once I had more time". A statement that perfectly sums up how easy it is to avoid preparing right in this moment. It seemed like it would take forever to do it right. That was my first hint that this was a problem and not just for my family.

That day I was solo parenting while my husband was away for many weeks at work, hosting family, working, worrying. Our home was filled with gear. Having been an outdoor enthusiast, instructor and retail manager for decades prior, I had plenty to choose from but none of it was sorted for emergency use. I knew better and still hadn't completed such a vital step. What was that all about?

The fire was contained days later, much to our relief, but soon after I found myself avoiding scheduling a family trip to the Oregon coast out of a quiet fear I had of an earthquake or tsunami striking while we were visiting, knowing we were unprepared.

I'm not an alarmist. I tend to be an optimist. I simply had read enough to understand the risks involved with visiting the Oregon coast. This marked a turning point for me and soon, with a little one excited to visit the ocean, I wasn’t willing to continue to avoid something that could be solved if I just took the time to think it through. I needed to find a way to feel safe and still visit the coast my family loves.

I'm a seasoned entrepreneur and a trained and certified life coach specializing in resistance and resilience. I have years under my belt helping people accomplish whatever they were ready to accomplish. Lofty goals are never easy. Spotting resistance is a huge part of my job. I know when to see it shifting, including in myself. I was in the exact sweet spot I look for as a coach: I was ready to pay attention to my own avoidance and unwind a road forward.

So, I sat with it. Took some time to think. It was a pretty simple fix, actually. We always stay out of the tsunami zone, always carried a pack to the beach and we all know exactly what to do and have with us should a disaster strike (now including the Grab + Go Box).

With the coast visit under my belt, I decided to focus on our lives at home, an area prone to wildfire, surrounded by amazing volcanoes and close enough to the Cascadia Subduction Zone to feel it if it slips into a megathrust in my lifetime.

I started to finally dive into researching. I tried to find the best practices for preparing my family. What I found was a mountain of information that was at times outdated, contradictory, cumbersome, or somewhat intimidating. What do we really need to be prepared? In my mind it is a product with clear and simple expertise that helps us prepare and shows us what to do in a real-time emergency while thoughtfully explaining how to recover should things go wrong.

I was ready for a product that was simple yet thorough. Satisfying to complete to help me get over any inevitable hump of resisting getting it all done but also bite sized so I could chip away at it.

Where was it? Well, it was nowhere, which blew my mind. Everyone needed something like this and it was nowhere?!

I knew what my family needed so I decided to create a product myself (entrepreneur time)! I assembled a team and expert advisors, studied the psychology of preparing, spoke with and read the guidance of disaster experts and then built it.
Creating Terra Frma was an enormous endeavor but one I believed had to be taken on because we all deserve to feel prepared and it's time to be ready.

I know how to motivate people. I know how to help people find the most focused, hopeful parts of themselves. I know how to move people through an experience. I know how to help people get things done. And I infused all of that into everything Terra Frma makes. For you. For all of us.

So today and every day, I'm wishing you and your family a successful journey toward preparedness.

I know you're going to do it.