Search results for: 'preparedness network'

  • Casual Group of People in a Row - Isolated

    Okay, ready to have your mind blown? Today’s post is a baby-steps-within-baby-steps post. Since we've been talking about CERT today, we thought it would be useful to brush up on the basics by revisiting a previous ‘baby steps’ series on the topic of preparedness networks. The articles and resources linked here are a great place to get started as you think about neighborhood networks and emergency plans.

    Step 1: Mix ‘n mingle

    The very first, most basic, and most crucial step to building a useful neighborhood network is to get to know your neighbors. Build trust, look for common interests, let them know you’re willing to help. Ultimately, you’re looking for complementary skills and resources, but none of that matters if you never speak with them.

     

    Step 2: Get to work

    Once you’ve built a social network, you’ll have likely identified those who would be open to participating in an emergency response network. The next step is to get it all down on paper: names and contact info; skills and equipment; lines of communication. Information overload? Organize it all in this ultra-handy neighborhood emergency plan packet. You can also take advantage of tools like Facebook groups to communicate both before and after a disaster.

     

    Step 3: Build your team

    With a basic plan in place, you can kick it up a notch and focus on bolstering specific elements of your neighborhood network. The ‘baby steps’ post here links to an article by a former Navy SEAL about elements of survival you may not have considered (fitness, finances, and the psychology of endurance, for example) and the importance of a strong team.

    Your own personal preparedness is vital, but enlisting the help of a supportive group of neighbors can create a pool of physical and emotional resources that might spell the difference between just surviving and thriving.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: skills, baby steps, Neighborhood Emergency Plan, CERT

  • FEMA is looking for applicants to their National Youth Preparedness Council. If FEMA isn't your thing, consider joining other organizations (like the Red Cross) or even starting your own preparedness coalitionYou’ll get emergency preparedness training and build your leadership skills. 

    To help you with the latter, here's a link to another article on building preparedness teams and a link to our Neighborhood Emergency Plan.

    Here's the announcement from FEMA: 

    Are you a 12- to 17-year old who makes a difference in your community’s disaster preparedness? Do you know someone who fits that description?

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is looking for youth leaders who are dedicated to public service, who are making a difference in their communities, and who want to expand their impact as national advocates for youth disaster preparedness.

    Nominations must be received by April 19, 2013 11:59 p.m. EDT.

    You can apply on your own or you can be nominated by a friend, family member, or someone else who knows about your emergency preparedness activities.

    Click here to read more and to download the application.

     

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: FEMA, National Youth Preparedness Council, application

  • When you hear the word “prepper,” what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Popular media portrays preppers as anti-social, militant hoarders who want nothing to do with the world around them. But we know better, don’t we?

    We know you, like us, are concerned about taking care of your loved ones in every situation. You want the confidence and security of knowing you can do so. There are many families, across the nation, who have established or created networks with other prepared families. It’s not unusual.

    Instead of isolating themselves, most people seek out group interaction during and after an emergency or disaster. Scientists have shown that this is a biological response– humans seek out the advice and company of others. It’s called deliberating.*

    Last Friday we talked about finding other prepared individuals and families that are interested in working together. Our first Baby Step this week is a bit of a repeat, just to make sure you’re moving in the direction of establishing a support network.

    Baby Step 1: Make a list of people who are interested in forming a group and the skills, tools, and resources they have.

    You don’t have to be best buds with the people in your network, but they should be trustworthy. You should know what they can do and let them know what you can do.

    Go to page four of our Neighborhood Emergency Plan packet to see the skills and special equipment most commonly needed. These include medical and mechanical skills, along with special equipment and vehicles.

    Don’t overlook any skill or any individual. For example, does the teenager across the road know CPR from her summer job as a lifeguard? Pay attention to skills that are valued but not considered necessary for survival:

    • A psychologist can do a lot to help those with anxiety, panic, or extreme fear.
    • A good haircut from a barber or hairstylist can lift your mood.
    • A tailor or seamstress can repair damaged materials like tents, tarps, clothing, and maybe even shoes.
    • A ham radio operator, even a hobbyist, can communicate when telephone, internet, and cell phone lines are down.
    • A nutritionist or dietician may be able to suggest alternative sources of nutrients.

     

    Here are a few more skills you probably haven’t considered:
    • Community organizer
    • Entertainers (like musicians or comedians to boost morale)
    • Chimney cleaners (in case this is your only source of heat)
    • Knife sharpeners
    • Undertaker, mortician, and sanitation workers
    • Runners/hikers/swimmers/cyclists/horseback riders (for transporting information and goods)
    • Engineers and people who are good at rigging stuff
    • Gardeners
    • Self-defense instructors
    • Hunters, fishermen, and foragers
    • Navigators 

    Baby Step 2: When you’ve established your network, join our group purchasing program.

    We offer discounts for group purchases, often as much as 49% off. We also offer free shipping on the entire order regardless of size once the minimum quantity of a group item has been purchased (as long as the order is shipped within the contiguous 48 states). Click here for details.

    Baby Step 3: Develop a neighborhood plan and schedule an emergency drill.

    Download our Neighborhood Emergency Plan to help you organize your group’s efforts. Once your plan is in place, hold an emergency drill to practice the plan. The practice will help you figure out what works (and what doesn’t) so you can adjust your plan accordingly. If you’re planning a drill, let us know. We’d love to hear how the experience goes for your neighborhood, and we’d love to share your pictures and video with our network.

    Here’s another tip: After an emergency strikes, hold a swap meet. The idea here is not necessarily to pool resources. It’s more of a barter-for-what-you-need deal. If, like me, you have 14 cases of tuna and no mayonnaise, this is the venue for you. By exchanging goods and services it’s possible to cover gaps in your emergency and food storage plans. 

    Read more here: Emergency Swap Meet

     

    *Amanda Ripley in Surviving Disaster, PBS Documentary (link)

     

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: baby steps, Preparedness network, group purchasing, emergency drill, Neighborhood Emergency Plan

  • We've got relationships on the brain this month. Having a friendly relationship with your neighbors can be a crucial survival tool. Ideally every individual and family is prepared, but it’s almost impossible to gather all the information, knowledge, skills, and equipment you’ll need for every possible scenario. This is where building a neighborhood group or a network of prepared people can help.

    Once you’ve got your basic short-term survival kit and food storage taken care of, take a look at other prepared families and see how you might help each other. The idea is to find like-minded, trustworthy individuals who have differing skills, and are willing to work together in a crisis.

    To make sure your support network is in place before disaster hits, follow these baby steps.

    Baby Step 1: Make a list of your skills and resources.

    Think of services you can provide and what equipment you have.

    Baby Step 2: Make a list of skills and resources you need.

    Some of the most valuable resources are people with skills and equipment that are common, yet specialized. Here are some commonly needed skills:

    • Paramedic, nurse, other medical workers
    • Construction workers (with access to a backhoe, jackhammer, or crane)
    • Electricians, plumbers, carpenters, or masons
    • Mechanics, drivers, or people with a HAZMAT license

    Baby Step 3: Meet your neighbors.

    Borrow a cup of sugar. Yeah, it’s an excuse… but if you need a reason, this one is as good as any. To thank them, make a batch of something sweet and when you take it over, chat for a bit.

    If you’re not the outgoing, introduce-yourself-in-person type, no problem! Diane Schmidt at About.com has a great idea.

    “I once wrote a note and attached it to a jar of homemade jam and left it on a neighbor's porch. I introduced our family, said where we lived, and that we were around if they needed anything. It was simple and brief and in return, we found some really great friends.”

    Baby Step 4: Get to know your neighbors better.

    Invite your neighbors over for a backyard hot dog roast, a mid-winter wassail party, or multi-family game night. The event doesn't have to be elaborate. In fact, you’ll enjoy it more if it’s casual, low-key, and fun.

    • Play games based on specific skills: knot tying, communication, problem solving, first aid, etc.
    • Play a get-to-know-you game: Write questions on cards and use them as prompts.

                            Given a specific situation (stranded in your car, lost in the woods, etc.) what would you do?

                            Have you ever survived a natural disaster?

    If your neighbors don’t respond enthusiastically, don’t get discouraged. There are plenty of people in town who are interested in prepping. They may lay low, but you’ll find them.

    Baby Step 5: Reach out to people in your area via our Forum.

    Our forum is a virtual network across the U.S. Contributors actively discuss topics and answer each other’s questions. You’ll find that there is a wide range of participants, from beginners to seasoned preppers. Click here to visit the Emergency Essentials Forum.

    You may also consider posting a note on the message board at a local outdoor supplier, hunting and sporting goods store, or on the American Prepper Network.

    Always use caution when communicating via the internet. Don’t post any personal information like your home address or phone number. If you are going to meet someone you’ve been introduced to online, meet in a public place, tell someone you trust where you’re going, who you’re meeting, and when you plan to return.

    Build up a network before a disaster hits your neighborhood!

    Check back next Friday for a list of skills you’ll want in your support network but probably haven’t considered.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: resources, skills, baby steps, dinner, Networking, Neighbors, tools, party