September is National Disaster Preparedness Month.

We should all take action to prepare! We are all able to help first responders in our community by training how to respond during an emergency and what to do when disaster strikes — where we live, work, and visit. The goal of NPM is to increase the overall number of individuals, families, and communities that engage in preparedness actions at home, work, business, school, and place of worship.

Make A Plan

Make a plan today. Your family may not be together if a disaster strikes, so it is important to know which types of disasters could affect your area.  Know how you’ll contact one another and reconnect if separated. Establish a family meeting place that’s familiar and easy to find.

Step 1: Put together a plan by discussing these 4 questions with your family, friends, or household to start your emergency plan.

  1. How will I receive emergency alerts and warnings?
  2. What is my shelter plan?
  3. What is my evacuation route?
  4. What is my family/household communication plan?

Step 2:  Consider specific needs in your household.

As you prepare your plan tailor your plans and supplies to your specific daily living needs and responsibilities. Discuss your needs and responsibilities and how people in the network can assist each other with communication, care of children, business, pets, or specific needs like the operation of durable medical equipment. Create your own personal network for specific areas where you need assistance.  Keep in mind some these factors when developing your plan:

  • Different ages of members within your household
  • Responsibilities for assisting others
  • Locations frequented
  • Dietary needs
  • Medical needs including prescriptions and equipment
  • Disabilities or access and functional needs including devices and equipment
  • Languages spoken
  • Cultural and religious considerations
  • Pets or service animals
  • Households with school-aged children

Step 3: Fill out a Family Emergency Plan

Download and fill out a family emergency plan or use them as a guide to create your own.

Step 4: Practice your plan with your family/household


Here is a list of suggested supplies for your survival kit:

Ready Bag Contents

  • 1 gallon of water per person, per day (at least)
  • Waterproof matches
  • Duct Tape
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Clothing with long sleeves and pants
  • 3 day supply of any medications taken regularly
  • N95 filter masks
  • Knife or scissors
  • Whistle
  • Extra cash
  • Candles
  • Radio with extra batteries or portable hand-cranked radio
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Hand tools (hammer, etc.)
  • Plastic garbage bags with ties (for human refuse and other garbage)
  • Vitamins
  • First Aid Kit
  • Games for children
  • Poncho or rain gear
  • Hat or cap
  • Feminine hygiene supplies
  • Lysol or Clorox sprays
  • Paper towels and toilet paper
  • Signal flare
  • Sturdy gloves
  • Blanket, pillows, or sleeping bags
  • Copies of important family documents such as insurance policies, ID and bank account records; store in a waterproof, portable container
  • List of doctors and relatives to be notified if you are injured
  • Food: Non-perishable foods, peanut butter, beef jerky, dried fruit, canned food w/opener. (Enough for 72 hours/3 days per person)
  • Mess kits, collapsible cups, bowls, utensils
  • Pet supplies: Food, water (Enough for 72 hours/3days), collar, tags/ID, blanket, toys


Here are some websites with more information on Disaster Preparedness: