September is National Preparedness Month, and in the aftermath of the tragic flooding and destruction in Texas caused by Hurricane Harvey, preparedness has never been more important for individuals, families, and communities. National Preparedness Month is part of the Ready Campaign, which offers a wide range of resources and even a disaster preparedness app to help communities get ready for potential disasters in their states. Learn more about what the Ready Campaign has to offer:
Assistance with the creation of a disaster plan. Does your family have an emergency preparedness plan? The best way to be prepared is with a quality plan.The goal is to know what to do in the event of an event such as an earthquake, flood, or wildfire.
Tips for Helping Others During Disasters. It’s not enough for a family here and there to be fully prepared in cases of emergency. The best disaster preparedness work happens at the community level to ensure everyone is safe during natural disasters. This is why FEMA has an entire guide dedicated to training community members on what to do before professional help arrives in the aftermath of a bad storm, flood, fire, or other disaster. There are additional informative resources available to teach people how to protect their neighbors as well.
An emphasis on practicing your plan. It’s not enough to merely have an idea of what you might do in case of a disaster. The absolute best way to prepare is practicing your plan (similar to how schools practice fire drills instead of just telling students where they should go if an emergency happens). It’s important to develop a financial preparedness plan, which includes building an emergency savings fund, gathering your crucial financial information into one convenient location, and assessing what your expenses might be if disaster strikes. It’s also important to be able to locate community organizations that could assist in an emergency — Where are the shelters? Where are the food banks? Hospitals?
A focus on helping others. We encourage everyone to get involved in community efforts to protect each other in emergency scenarios. Many people don’t realize the importance of being prepared. That’s why it’s so important to reach out to friends and family to help in this important matter.