Are you preparing?
Although September is National Preparedness Month, given the constant barrage of cascading changes in information, I believe it is wiser to encourage you to renew NOW your preparedness plans, pantry stock, and water supply, and make additions and/or adjustments as you see fit. Discuss with your spouse or adult children. Everyone can participate, everyone has a say, in the best way to prepare for emergencies.
Don’t wait for things to get better. They may not.
The Time to Make a Plan is Now
Make a plan today. Your family may not be together if a disaster strikes, so it is important to know which types of disasters could affect your area. Know how you’ll contact one another and reconnect if separated. Establish a family meeting place that’s familiar and easy to find.
To make preparation plans you will need to account for the following basics:
- Water (2 weeks worth – 1 gallon/person/day)
- Food (3 days/3 weeks/3 months worth)
- Clothing (including footwear – season appropriate)
- Communication (alternatives to stay in touch with family)
- Transportation (and fuel – if you have to get out)
- Shelter (whether you shelter in or bug out)
Don’t forget any special needs such as;
- legal docs,
- mobility issues,
- family photos,
- comfort foods, snacks, treats,
- Bible and other reading materials, etc.)
Remember, when trouble hits, you can’t rely on your local stores. Remember stores running out of toilet paper and soup in 2020? By preparing these things in advance, you won’t be caught wondering what you needed that you forgot, and your family and friends won’t have to worry that you have what you need.
More Thorough Preparations
Step 1: Put a plan together by discussing the questions below with your family, friends or household to start your emergency plan.
- How much food and water to I actually have? How many family meals?
- How will I receive emergency alerts and warnings? AlertsUSA!
- What is my shelter plan?
- What is my evacuation route?
- What is my family/household communication plan?
- Do I need to update my emergency preparedness kit?
- Check with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
Step 2: Consider specific needs in your household.
As you prepare your plan tailor your plans and supplies to your specific daily living needs and responsibilities. Discuss your needs and responsibilities and how people in the network can assist each other with communication, care of children, business, pets or specific needs like operating medical equipment. Create your own personal network for specific areas where you need assistance. Keep in mind some these factors when developing your plan:
- Different ages of members within your household
- Responsibilities for assisting others
- Locations frequented
- Dietary needs
- Medical needs including prescriptions and equipment
- Disabilities or access and functional needs including devices and equipment
- Languages spoken
- Cultural and religious considerations
- Pets or service animals
- Households with school-aged children
Step 3: Fill out a Family Emergency Plan
Download and fill out a family emergency plan or use it as a guide to create your own.
Download the IOCC (International Orthodox Christian Charities) documents on Preparedness.
Step 4: Practice your plan with your family
- Extreme Heat preparedness (for Arizona)
- Family Emergency Communication Guide (PDF)
- Family Communication Plan Fillable Card (PDF)
- Emergency Plan for Families or (PDF)
- Emergency Plan for Kids or (PDF)
- Emergency Plan for Commuters (PDF)
- Pet Owners (PDF)
- Family Emergency Communication Planning Document (PDF)
- Family Emergency Communication Plan Wallet Cards (PDF)
- Know Your Alerts and Warnings (PDF)
- Protect Critical Documents and Valuables (PDF)
- Document and Insure Your Property (PDF)
- Emergency Financial First Aid Kit (PDF)
- Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Disaster Checklist (PDF)
- Make a Plan (Video)