Emergency preparedness, in my opinion, is something that is very important for everyone to take the time to learn understand and create an individual family emergency plan in case a disaster should occur.
Americans have lived the "lap of luxury" for so long, become lazy, apathetic, or just too busy in their lives to consider the possibility of a disaster happening to them and have taken even the most basic essentials for granted. Now with the new "nanny state" mentality, we will become more reliant on the government to take care of us than ever before. The fact is that if something does happen, the government will tell you themselves that YOU need to make preparations for yourselves in case no one comes to take care of you...look at Hurricane Katrina.
People were so angry that the government didn't come when they were supposed to that it was considered their fault and theirs alone. FEMA and the Dept of homeland security (DHS) were left in the crossfire for everything that went bad, including president Bush and his administration.
I attended a three day seminar to become a C-CERT instructor with most of the leaders of fire and rescue, EMS and both FEMA and DHS and senior instructors from the four NW states.
During the course they emphasized " Take the necessary steps to prepare yourself, your family, your neighborhood and your community...in that order...Make sure you have enough supplies for at least a week and longer if possible"
We learned that during a mass casualty situation time and resources will be extremely limited and the more people that are prepared the less they will have to worry waiting for someone to come to their rescue.
Are you prepared for an emergency? If not this task is overwhelming. When I began I didn't know where to start.
We have a tremendous LDS population here and so when I thought of preparedness I naturally thought to go the the LDS website( http://www.providentliving.org/) I wasn't as impressed as I thought I would be because the website lacked the desired specifics and details I felt I needed. They have a food calculator and provide a list of supplies and food which are excellent but it was clear that this was more designed for people who have already learned how or have already begun to prepare.
Feeling like I hadn't found the details I was looking for I did various preparedness searches for days and found bits and pieces of what I needed but was wanting to find one place that I could get everything I needed. I found two sites in particular the one I recommend most is the Survival center in McKenna, Washington (http://survivalcenter.com/).
Unfortunately this site was the one I stumbled on last but found as the most complete, most cost-effective, most experienced and treated you most like family. In a time where customer service seems to be lacking these fine people exceeded my expectations.
First, I recommend purchassing their basic preparedness DVD set and watch the DVD's the course is easy and the most worthwhile compilation of information. It takes you through the complete process of what to get, why, how much, for how long. It covers caring for elderly, babies, how to store food, what medical supplies to have, how to can, types of canning. it comes with shopping lists, in detail, and solutions for water storage and treatment, fuel treament and goes the extra mile into underground living options.
Second, take your time and view the catalog. Look at all the supplies they have and their varieties, which far surpass anything I had found in my quest for information.
Third, Take a tour through the preparedness manual and familiarize yourself with the sections in this book.
Fourth, make a list of items you wish to purchase. If you cannot afford to buy an entire list try to make weekly, monthly or scheduled purchases to begin to build your kit.
These people are wonderful and will take your calls and will answer your questions as they care more about preparing people to become self sufficient than becoming wealthy. It is their business but it is also their passion.
As far as I am concerned they are my one stop shop but don't take it from me, here are a few other resources:
Emergency essentials ( http://www.beprepared.com/) -website is busy, lots of information but difficult to view items in detail and appear to lack the variety that survival center had.
more references at:
A great resource, perfect size to be included in every car, day, 72 hour or home kit that was given to me by a friend is a book called "It's a disaster". The book can be requested by leaving a comment on this post or can be downloaded here free: