Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Build your Own Family Emergency Kits: Part 1

I am excited for my mini-series this week on Family Emergency Kits (sometimes also called 72-hour kits). Now first things first I must confess - I feel like a giant hypocrite. It's true! I have known FOREVER that this is something I needed to do... it just hasn't made it to the top of my to-do list. However, I have that growing feeling that this something I cannot postpone any longer. I need to get prepared so that in the event of an emergency I can be calm for my family and not fear or panic that we won't have what we need.
Maybe you are like me and this will be just the nudge we need to get ourselves back on track with our preparations. :) So even though right now as I type this I don't have a kit put together -- by the end of the week I will! Come along with me!!
Today we are going to ask ourselves WHY.
Why does my family need an emergency kit?
Well, in the event of an emergency you probably won't have the time or resources to grab everything you need. You need to be able to grab the essentials and run out the door.

Let's pretend you were just told that you have 15 minutes to get yourself, your family and everything you need for the next three days in your car. Could you do it? I'm positive you would be out the door with your family. What else would have made it into your bag in that time frame?

Having it all gathered together in one spot will be oh so helpful. When I think of this scenario I often think about tornados, hurricanes, wildfires and other natural disasters. For some of these events it almost seems cyclical. Each year there is a season when everyone almost expects to see events like this unfold on the news or nearby. Despite that so many families are left without even the most basic of essentials. We depend heavily on always having access to a fully stocked stores and to be able to buy as we need to.
In some emergencies we will not even need to leave our homes but we will still be affected. Severe weather storms, overloaded power circuits or even a driver who plows into a central power post can knock out the electricity to entire neighborhoods. Water treatment facilities may not be able to properly balance or treat water.
When Hurricane Sandy hit the East Coast last fall I watched news reports of all the damage. Obtaining something like a generator post-hurricane is almost laughable. Food and water are quickly depleted from grocery stores and shipments into the area are often delayed due to road closures and power outages. Even the ability to purchase gasoline for automobiles was limited in areas after Sandy hit. Some families were able to evacuate or leave the area afterwards until everything was restored. Many more had to bunker down and make due with what they had.
 Having what we need in our homes will help us feel more secure. There are so many things in this world that I have no control over. Helping my family to have water, food, necessities - even in a time of crisis - is something I can make preparations for. On  Ready.gov it says "Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours or it might take days." I'd rather do my best to be self reliant and even have enough to help out my neighbors and friends.

Stay tuned! Tomorrow we'll be covering WHAT to include in our kits and how to create them easily and for LESS!

Check out Part 2 and Part 3

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