Preparing for Disaster: Are You Ready?

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Community Involvement

The MRC recruits people with medical or health backgrounds to assist during an emergency. Photo by MRC.

Many local organizations will be hosting emergency preparedness events throughout September. For disaster preparedness events in your area contact your local American Red Cross and Public Health Department; they are just some of the organizations that may be hosting disaster preparedness events in your area.

If you would be interested in helping out your community during a disaster, the Citizen Corps is a nation-wide organization.

The Citizen Corps was founded as a result of the September 11th terrorism attacks. The Citizen Corps mission is to; “harness the power of every individual through education, training, and volunteer service to make communities safer, stronger, and better prepared to respond to the threats of terrorism, crime, public health issues, and disasters of all kinds.”

An extension of the Citizen Crops is the Medical Reserve Corps.

If you have a medical background and would be interested in volunteering during an emergency, contact the Medical Reserve Corps. The Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) enlists volunteers who assist their local community’s health needs during a disaster.

Why Should I be Prepared?

Winter storm in KY 2009. Photo by Sydney and Russell Poore

When a disaster occurs, it is uncertain how long it would take emergency personnel to get to you and your family. If it a large scale disaster, it could be days before someone is able to get to you. For example, on January 26, 2009, Kentucky experienced a winter ice storm that weighted down power lines until they snapped. According to FEMA, over 600,000 Kentuckians went without power for up to ten days. Would you have the supplies to go ten days without power in the winter? This is just one example of how important it is to have a plan, and have a kit.

Always Be Prepared

Preparing for a disaster can seem like a daunting task, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that people who are prepared deal with disasters more effectively. Being prepared also help reduce fear and anxiety when a disaster occurs.

Resources:

American Red Cross. Plan and Prepare: Get A Kit. Accessed September 13, 2011.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Emergency Preparedness and You. Accessed September 13, 2012.

Federal Emergency Management Agency. Basic Disaster Supplies Kit. Accessed September 13, 2011.

Federal Emergency Management Agency. Kentucky. Accessed September 13, 2012.

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