This September is the 9th annual National Preparedness Month, sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Founded after 9/11, this month is dedicated to increasing the preparedness of all communities throughout the United States.
Preparedness is a shared responsibility and it takes the whole community’s involvement. All month long FEMA is encouraging folks to take action and join the National Preparedness Community at www.Ready.gov/community
to get access to a toolkit full of resources for promoting emergency preparedness and to receive e-mail updates.
Here are a few quick steps to put you on the road to readiness this month:
• Build an emergency supply kit. Make sure to include the basics, such as at least a three-day supply of food and water. Other items to include are batteries, flashlights, a manual can opener, a radio, a battery-operated cellphone charger and copies of important documents.
• Create a family communication plan so everyone knows what needs to be done before and during an emergency or in an evacuation. Review and practice the plan with all family members.
• Stay informed! Keep up to date on all the information your local emergency management officials send out during an emergency. Make sure to heed all advice from local emergency officials, such as evacuation notices.
• Your smartphone may be the best tool you have to say informed and contact loved ones. Be prepared with smartphone apps that can help you learn to identify and respond threats in your area. For a list of helpful apps, visit Disaster Preparedness Apps.
Being ready means being aware of potential risks, understanding where we can turn for help, and being prepared and willing to help our neighbors and community members. Find out who may need a little extra help and lend a helping hand. With a community effort, we can make a difference in the health of our families and our communities.