I have been focused on preparation for a long time, so any discussion on the topic comes very natural to me.  I am finding, however; even as the topic of preparation is becoming more widespread – there are still quite a few people who do not fully understand what is meant by preparation.

I’ve stated before, like with everything people have varying levels of preparation – and certainly different motivations for preparation.  Let me share some general insights on preparation, specifically as it relates to an emergency “change” in lifestyle.

The first question that I’d ask someone to gauge their preparation status is:  “If there were to be an emergency of any kind, are you adequately prepared?”  It may be a tornado, flood or even a hurricane.  It could even be a catastrophic event such as a pandemic illness that sweeps through the world. How prepared are you in case of just such an event?

Unfortunately, the answer for most people is that they are not prepared at all.  Emergency preparation takes forethought and careful planning.  It is not about paranoia or that the world is coming to an end soon (although, you should be prepared for that as well).  If you look, you can definitely find many crackpot (some legitimate) websites that are dedicated to driving paranoia and government conspiracies.  Our intent is not to fuel fear – rather, to impress upon the need to prepare in the event of an emergency or disaster.  This article is designed to help you understand what you can do to be prepared.

How do people prepare for emergencies?

Emergency preparation all starts with a list.  You need to really stop and think about the possible emergencies that could happen in your region of the world. If you live near a river, lake or the ocean then you have to worry about flooding.  If you live in a tornado prone area, you need to prepare for that. Winter storms can do a terrible amount of damage. Step one is thinking about what you use on a daily basis.  Water is the number one resource that must be conserved and kept in case of an emergency.  People can survive weeks without food but only a few days without water.  And in the case of an emergency you cannot trust the water coming out of your faucet.

The second step is examining your shelter.  Should your home be damaged you need to have an alternate place for shelter set up.  It may be at a friend, family member or coworker’s home.

The third most important step is making an emergency plan. This plan should detail where all members of the family will meet in case they are separated at the time of the emergency. There are many books that you can purchase to help you learn basic survival skills in case of a disaster. You should consider picking one up and reviewing it just to see how well you would fare.

Are there classes I can take for emergency preparation?

One of the most important emergency preparation classes you can take is a CPR class. CPR is a valuable tool and skill to know. Even rudimentary wound cleansing and protection can save a life during an emergency. You may also want to consider wilderness courses where you are taught to live off the land, so to speak. The classes can teach you how to build a fire without using a lighter, how to prepare and filter water for safe drinking and cooking uses and they can even teach you how to prepare an emergency shelter. Another class you might think about taking is one in self protection. Though it may not seem like a preparation class for an emergency consider that it is a valuable skill to know as many people react differently to emergencies and you may be called on to protect your valuable supplies.

Where can I buy an emergency preparation kit?

You would be amazed at how many places sell emergency preparation kits. One website www.quakekare.com sells kits in all sizes. The kits start out for a four person on upwards to a 100 person survival kit. This is not the only website either. VKRsupplies.com is another website to take a look at if you want to buy a ready-made kit. The one thing to keep in mind when deciding to buy a pre-assembled kit is finding out exactly what the kit contains and what you will still have to add to it. You might find that it is less expensive to simply gather all of the items yourself and save money in the long run.

Are there any books or websites on emergency preparation?

There are countless survival books in bookstores or at your local library that can give you a checklist of things you need to set aside in case of an emergency. You can even go online to www.ready.gov to see the list of what the federal government and FEMA consider to be essentials for any emergency preparation kit. The website is a plethora of information and printable checklists to get you ready for any emergency that may occur. The one thing that all have in common is having a disaster plan ready for all of your family members in case a disaster or emergency happens when you and your family are separated. You absolutely must make sure that your family members know what to do and where to meet so that you are not separated from each other for long.