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Is your family ready? It’s National Preparedness Month

Does your family know what to do if a tornado, earthquake, flood or other disaster strikes? Do you have a disaster plan or kit prepared?

September is National Preparedness Month and across the United States, government offices and agencies, as well as private organizations and businesses are developing emergency preparedness plans and encouraging citizens to do the same.

Ready.gov is part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) national Ready Campaign and has resources to help communities, families and businesses prepare for the unthinkable disaster, even a pandemic or terrorist attack.

“National Preparedness Month – observed every year in September – serves as a reminder that everyone must take action to prepare for the types of emergencies that can affect us,” said Beth Freeman, administrator, FEMA Region VII. “It enables us to take yet another step, big or small, from simply existing in an environment of planned activities, events, and to-dos, to proactively preparing to survive and thrive after an unplanned emergency.”

A military couple load their emergency kit on their patio during National Preparedness Month.

Lists are available to help create an emergency kit.

In honor of National Preparedness Month, Ready has launched Resolve to be Ready that focuses on ‘Family Connection’ to reinforce the importance of parents including their children in preparedness conversations in advance of potential disasters. The Ready campaign makes an emergency preparedness resolution easy to keep by recommending families consider these three ideas when making a plan: who to call, where to meet and what to pack.

At Ready.gov/kids, parents, child caregivers and educators will find materials to discuss emergency preparedness with children, including a downloadable family emergency plan and emergency kit checklist.

American family discuss their emergency plan during National Preparedness Month.

Discuss emergency preparedness planning with your family during National Preparedness Month.

Craig Fugate, FEMA administrator urges every family to begin by taking one simple, free step toward preparedness by developing a communications plan.

“Having a family communications plan on hand can literally mean the difference between being with the ones you love the most during a disaster, or the anxiety of frantically trying to find and reunite with your children and loved ones,” Fugate said. ” Having a family communications plan can help even when there isn’t a large scale disaster like an earthquake or a hurricane. They’re also helpful for day-to-day routines when things can be unpredictable.”

About Candice Fitzgibbons

I am a Sevier County resident and active in my local community. I've spent more than 20 years as a graphic designer and copywriter, creating marketing materials to help small to medium sized businesses and non-profit organizations achieve their goals. I have a passion for equality, the environment and animal rights.