Be Prepared Not Scared
September is National Preparedness Month. This year FEMA and Ready.org has centered the theme around being, “Prepared Not Scared”. This theme focuses on the importance of making sure that you are prepared in the event of an emergency. When you are prepared you are more likely to be less frightened in the event of an emergency. This raises your chances of making it through the situation safely.
Throughout the month of September each week has a different focus on how to help you prepare for an emergency. These topics are:
Save Early for Disaster Costs
Homeowners’ and renters’ insurance are the first step to financially protecting yourself against disasters. Once you have your insurance, you should have pictures of important documents and personal items. These pictures can then be submitted to your insurance company in the event of a disaster to show proof of the items that were lost.
While homeowner’s and renters insurance is important, it does not always cover certain natural disasters like floods and earthquakes. It can also be a difficult task to work with insurance companies to get your money. This is why it is important to have a nest egg in case of an emergency. It can be difficult to set aside money each paycheck, but if you have anything to spare it is a must.
Along with having savings, it is important to have cash on hand. In the event of a natural disaster there is a chance that ATMs and credit card readers will be down. This means that cash will be your only form of payment available.
Make a Plan to Prepare for Disasters
One of the most important steps in preparing for a disaster is to make a plan. Making a plan includes:
- Signing up for alerts and warnings for your area – The FEMA app allows you to sign up for alerts for up to 5 locations.
- Learning your evacuation zone.
- Making an evacuation plan.
Once you have a plan made it is also important to practice your plan from beginning to end. This includes running through the process with your children and pets. This will help prepare them for an emergency and allow you to see any areas where they might need a little extra help.
Check back in on our blog next week for more detailed information about creating an emergency evacuation.
Teach Youth to Prepare for Disasters
It is extremely important that you teach your children what to do in the event of an emergency. This includes having them:
- Know how to call 9-1-1.
- Memorize emergency contact numbers.
- Practice their evacuation route.
It is also important that you prepare for an emergency with your child in mind. This includes:
- Packing your child’s medication in your emergency kit.
- Including comfort items like stuffed animals or games into your emergency kit.
- Updating school records and discussing an emergency plan if something happens while they are at school.
Get Involved in Your Community’s Preparedness
Not only is it important for you and your family to be prepared for a disaster, but it is also important for your community to be prepared. Some ways to do this are:
- Learn about what kinds of disasters can affect your community.
- Volunteer for your communities Community Emergency Response Team (CERTs). You can find more information for this on FEMA’s website.
- Get your CPR/AED certification.
- Make a plan with your neighbors about how you can help each other before and after a disaster.
Use this years National Preparedness Month to prepare yourself, your children, and your community for any disasters that can strike in your area.
-The IFS Team