September is National Preparedness Month - Are You Prepared?

September is National Preparedness Month - Are You Prepared?

September is National Preparedness Month, and this year’s theme is “Disasters Don’t Wait. Make Your Plan Today.” Weeks are separated out so you can make a plan and prepare for any disaster that may come your way.

Week one is making a plan (September 1-5)

Talk to your friends, family, and even neighbors about what your plans are when something happens. Find out what they plan on doing and come together with some sort of idea of how you will check up on one another, and who has what available. Get an idea of what you will need to put together at this stage. Make sure you account for your entire family, as well as helping neighbors if they need something.

Week two is building a kit (September 6-12)

Now is the time to put the planning into action. Build your supplies that you will need when disaster strikes. Make sure your food, water, and whatever you will use to charge items and have light is in something you can throw in the car in case you need to evacuate. If you can, dedicate a room or a portion of a room to your supplies. Making a list is a great idea and letting other family members know what you have and where it can be found is crucial. Test items to make sure they function properly, and if need be, charge items and keep them charged so you do not have to worry about it when the time comes that you need it. 

Make sure you consider what you and your neighbors came up with. Do you have enough food, water, and other supplies to assist if necessary? Did you consider the medications and other items you take, or your family takes daily? What about pets and pet food? Do you have a way of transporting your animals in case you are evacuated? Does your family know not only where the items are stored but what is in them?

Having a dedicated space for your supplies, as well as letting your family know where they are and what is in them will help everyone keep track and be able to get what is needed in case anything happens.

Week three is prepare for disasters (September 13-19)

What natural disasters happen close to your home? Do you have earthquakes, tornadoes, or hurricanes? Be aware and prepared for these events.

Make sure you check on things like home insurance and check the integrity of your home. Make sure you have what you need, or know how to get items to cover windows, or put up sandbags close to your home.

Let your family know what will happen if you hear a siren or local warning there is something coming your way.

Week four is teach youth about preparedness (September 20-26)

Talking to your children (at age appropriate times) is important. Let them know we live in a place where these things happen and how you deal with them. Reassure them the family is prepared and let them know what will happen should disaster strike.

Since its inception in 2004, National Preparedness Month has been a great way to get started or gain momentum in getting prepared. Look in your local community for things going on that have to do with preparedness this month.


  • JD

    FEMA has a list
    Here is a sample: A basic emergency supply kit could include the following recommended items:
    Water (one gallon per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation)
    Food (at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food)
    Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert
    First aid kit
    Extra batteries
    Whistle (to signal for help)
    Dust mask (to help filter contaminated air)
    Plastic sheeting and duct tape (to shelter in place)
    Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties (for personal sanitation)
    Wrench or pliers (to turn off utilities)
    Manual can opener (for food)
    Local maps
    Cell phone with chargers and a backup battery

  • Sheelah

    Thank you for the ideas of what to think about to prepare for disasters but I was hoping for a more in-depth list of suggestions as to exactly what to pack, store, purchase, have-on-hand etc. Do you have these lists anywhere on your website?
    Thank you

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