FEMA, the Federal Management Agency is encouraging companies, organizations and individuals to think about (come up with) a plan in case of a natural disaster in their area.

FEMA does these Prepareathons twice a year and the first one for 2015 is on April 30th. Does your company have a plan? Do you have one in place at home. Who participates in the prepareathons?

Across the United States, businesses, schools, civic organizations, and families will review their emergency plans, put together or check on their emergency supplies, and run practice drills. In the West, people may be planning for wildfires; in the Midwest, families may wake up during the night to practice tornado safety; and in the North, businesses may assess their risk of flooding. The important thing is that people will be reviewing their risks and making a plan to survive

What types of materials and personal items should you include in your preparedness kit?

Exercises for the America’s PrepareAthon! can be very simple: putting together copies of documents that would be needed in an emergency (such as birth certificates, mortgage papers, and insurance cards) and securing them in watertight containers. Exercises may be more complicated, such as staging/responding to a mock mass casualty. People will be making sure they have enough food and water for each person in their family to last at least three days in case they are unable to leave their homes. Some will be doing a “dry run” of everyone meeting at their designated safe spot. Others will be talking with their co-workers to make sure they have reviewed their facility safety plan and know what to do and where to go for shelter.

Whatever the activity, it will help people be prepared in case of a natural disaster. Being prepared means saving lives. Are you prepared?

Visit www.community.fema.gov to learn more about America’s PrepareAthon!, the risks that threaten your neighborhood and ways to lessen them.