Are you prepared for a disaster? September is National Preparedness Month. The theme for 2019 is “Prepared, Not Scared”. Disasters are a topic that many people are scared to think about because of the harsh reality of what could happen, but you need to be “Prepared, Not Scared.” Throughout the month of September each week carries a topic to focus on while creating your disaster plans.
“Save Early for Disaster Cost” starts out the month from Sept. 1-7. During Week One, think about what you will do financially should a disaster occur. You should look at things such as: does your family have an emergency cash fund that can be used, do you have the proper insurance to help with cost to recover from a disaster, and do you have financial and legal documents in a “safe” location to continue after a disaster?
During the week of Sept. 8-14, families need to “Make a Plan” for disasters and emergencies. These plans should consist of a multitude of things such as: how to get alerts and warnings, evacuation plans, meeting locations, and the preparation of a 72-hour kit. These kits can be built or bought, but need to contain supplies to help you survive a disaster for 72-hours. Items that need to be included in this kit are water, non-perishable food, flashlights, medication. More can be found at www.ready.gov.
Youth Preparedness Week is Sept. 15-21. This week is dedicated to adolescents. Preparing children for a disaster is very important. Children need to learn who and how to call for help, what to do if a disaster occurs and you are away from home, and what to do at school. This also is a good week to update children’s school emergency information, teach children about preparedness, and build a disaster kit with your child.
Sept. 22-30 completes the National Preparedness Month with “Get Involved in Your Communities Preparedness”. Getting involved can consist of attending meetings for a mitigation plan or volunteering for response programs such as the medical reserve corps or amateur radio. Other ways to get involved can be making plans with neighbors to help each other or even volunteering at a local fire department because they will be the first responders in a time of disaster.
To get more information on National Preparedness Month, you can visit www.ready.gov or go to our website www.meigs-health.com and click the emergency preparedness link.
Brody Davis is the Public Health Emergency Response Coordinator at the Meigs County Health Department.