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September is National Preparedness Month, make sure your family is ready in the event of disaster

National Preparedness Month (NPM) is an observance each September to raise awareness about the importance of preparing for disasters and emergencies that could happen at any time. The 2022 theme is “A Lasting Legacy: The life you’ve built is worth protecting. Prepare for disasters to create a lasting legacy for you and your family.”

Take time to learn lifesaving skills − such as CPR and first aid, check your insurance policies and coverage for the hazards you may face, such as flood, earthquakes, and tornados. Make sure to consider the costs associated with disasters and save for an emergency. Also, know how to take practical safety steps like shutting off water and gas.

Often, family members and neighbors will be the first ones in our communities to act after a disaster strikes and before first responders arrive, so it is important to prepare in advance to help yourself and your community.

For Individuals with Disabilities

Disability intersects every demographic group—there are people with disabilities of all ages, races, genders, or national origin. For people with disabilities and their families, it is important to consider individual circumstances and needs to effectively prepare for emergencies and disasters.

For more information, see the Ready.gov page for people with disabilities.

Get informed

• Know what disasters could affect your area, which ones could call for an evacuation and when to shelter in place.

• Keep a NOAA Weather Radio tuned to your local emergency station and monitor TV and radio. Follow mobile alerts and warnings about severe weather in your area.

• Download the FEMA app and get weather alerts from the National Weather Service for up to five different locations anywhere in the United States.

Make a plan

In the event of a disaster could you make it on your own for several days? After a disaster you may
not have access to a medical facility or even a drugstore. It’s crucial to plan for your daily needs and know what you would do if they became limited or unavailable.

Additional planning steps include:

• Inform your support network where you keep your emergency supplies. You may want to consider giving a trusted member a key to your house or apartment.

• Plan for accessible transportation that you may need for evacuation or getting around during or after disaster. Check with local transit providers as well as with your emergency management agency to identify appropriate accessible options.

• If you are on dialysis or other life-sustaining medical treatment, know the location and availability of more than one facility that can help you.

• If you use medical equipment in your home that requires electricity, talk to your doctor or health care provider about what you may be able to do to keep it running during a power outage. You can also ask your power provider to put you on a list for priority power restoration.

• About half of all Americans take a prescription medicine every day. An emergency can make it difficult for them to refill their prescription or to find an open pharmacy. Organize and protect your prescriptions, over-the-counter drugs, and vitamins to prepare for an emergency.

• Wear medical alert tags or bracelets. If you have a communication disability, consider carrying printed cards or storing information on your devices to inform first responders and others how to communicate with you.

• Locate and access your electronic health records from a variety of sources by using the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ online tool.

Build an emergency kit. (Illustrations from Ready.gov)

Emergency Kits

Build an emergency supply kit this #NationalPreparednessMonth. Consider unique needs of your family. Include supplies that might be needed by pets, older adults, and those with disabilities in the event of the emergency. Create a support network of people who can help you in a disaster.
Keep a contact list in a watertight container in your emergency kit or on your electronic devices.


Build a #LastingLegacy: Prepare your kids for disasters and emergencies. Take time to plan and have conversations about preparedness. Help them know how to stay safe and navigate potentially scary situations.

Disasters can leave children and teens feeling frightened, confused, and insecure. Their responses can be quite varied. It’s important to not only recognize these reactions, but also help children cope with their emotions.


Your pets are also part of your legacy. Add a selfie, medicine, grooming items, a collar with an ID and a leash to your emergency bag in case you need to evacuate.

Related Resources

Emergency Preparedness
Family Resources
Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance: Kentucky

Campbell County Office of Emergency Management

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