Do you have a podcast or Kindle book in your queue on the topic of emergency preparedness and it’s been there for months, waiting for you to peruse it? Do things just keep coming up and you never quite get to making that emergency kit you know you’re supposed to have in your car? Emergency preparedness is a difficult topic for some but I’m convinced that people are only uncomfortable with it because they’re not as prepared as they could be for the emergencies that might come to their families. Let’s stop worry and start working! To that end, here are a few ideas to help with emergency preparedness for families.
Incidentally, the book discussed in this post was of such value that I added it to the suggest resources in my own book, The Do It Yourself Homestead. Check it out today!
Emergency Preparedness for Families
Preparing for potential disasters is a good goal for anyone but, if you have a family, it’s an absolute must! You can’t improvise with children in an emergent situation, especially if you’re busy running around terrified. Let’s take the fear of the idea of preparing and just have some fun with it! The following ideas come to you from my family and from Julie Sczerbinski’s fine book The Survival Savvy Family. Julie, who is also the voice behind the blog Earth and Honey, sent me her book for review and I learned so much. I considered our family pretty survival savvy but there were so many little details that Julie inspired me with that I had never thought of before – mostly in the getting organized area. I’m never very organized, sadly.
#1 Get a Grip
Disturbances to daily life happen all the time and you deal with them just fine because they don’t overtax your resources, both mental and physical. The goal of emergency preparedness is simply to get mental and physical stores prepared for larger disturbances like job loss, natural disaster, civil unrest or any other big problem. It’s as simple as a mathematical equation – you’ve got this, if you’ve prepared.
#2 Get Your Supplies Gathered
There are so many quality websites, Earth and Honey, books and supply houses that can help you with this topic and Julie’s is one of those books. The Survival Savvy Family has text outlining what you should store in the way of click here, water, clothing, supplies, fuel and more but Julie also includes handy charts and lists for you to print off. She suggests you create a Grab and Go Binder to keep important documents and information in so that you have it handy in any situation. She provides phone list ideas, evacuation list ideas and more – all to go into your binder.
I really loved this idea! I have a lot of what she talks about, especially in the way of copies and information for my kids, but it’s all just shoved in my grab and go bag. I still want copies in there, but I’ve already starting filling out Julie’s charts to create a binder, too. I need smart people to tell me how to better organize because it’s just not my strong suit.
#3 Get Up and Get Practicing
Having all the food, water and supply storage you’ll need is actually the easy part. The hardest skill to master is learning how to live with it all as part of your every day life. There’s food and water that need to be rotated regularly, fire drills to run and evacuation routes to plot. Most of the work should be done BEFORE the emergency so that how you react is, in large part, just a matter of habit.
Because her book is geared towards families, Julie has some great ideas for conversations to have with your children ahead of various disasters. She also has ideas for how to keep kiddos entertained during trying times, as well as what to include in their grab and go bags. She suggests repeatedly that we should run through drills with our children; not to scare them but to prepare them. These don’t have to be boring, either! Include the children in the planning for your emergency drills, get their ideas on scenarios and what-ifs. Always end each drill with a treat and your hearty praise of their efforts.
To read about our latest family preparedness drill, this one with a simulated power outage, click here.
I really was so very pleased to read Julie’s book and am grateful she took the time to write it for all of us. It’s well written, professionally produced, clear and engaging but her fun personality comes through, too. Certainly NOT a dull preparedness read! This one is a must for all families, I truly believe.