September is National Preparedness Month – Every second counts when it comes to helping children and families stay safe in disasters. Do you and your family have a plan for when disaster strikes?
Although we think “that would never happen to me” or “that kind of disaster would never happen here,” the truth is, we really never know when or where disaster might strike. And honestly, disaster has many different definitions. Children are the most vulnerable in emergency situations. That’s why Save the Children encourages everyone to act to better protect kids BEFORE disaster strikes.
Disasters happen. All over the world – every single day. But how we prepare for them can make all of the difference in the world. So how do you prepare? Where do you even start? It is really scary to think about getting separated from our kids in a disaster.
- Every day, 69 million U.S. children are separated from their families while they are at school or child care.
- After Hurricane Katrina there were more than 5,000 reports of missing children. It took 7 months to reunite the last child with her family.
- Your child’s ICE card should include 3 emergency contacts — including an out-of-town contact, because during emergencies, local communications are often down.
Do the Prep Step!
Make emergency prep fun for the whole family. Save the Children also created a fun song and dance called “The Prep Step” to help kids learn the 3 important prep steps every family should take. Check it out!
Preparedness can help kids feel safe, not scared. It can even be fun! That’s the idea behind this song and dance, and we’re hoping it will empower kids to be changemakers in their own families. After all, only 65% of US families have an adequate emergency plan. We hope the song helps families discuss preparedness and that kids will help motivate their parents to take the following actions:
Prep Step #1 = Make ICE cards for kids. www.SavetheChildren.org/ICE In Case of Emergency (ICE), would you be able to reunite quickly with your children? It’s free and easy! Fill out one form for your whole family online (Save the Children will not store your child’s info anywhere). Print out the cards (you’ll get two copies for each child), cut and fold. Put one copy in a luggage tag to keep inside your child’s bag. Keep the other copy in your wallet.
Prep Step #2 = Make an emergency plan and practice as a family. www.SavetheChildren.org/checklists.
Prep Step #3 = Make an emergency plan and practice as a family. http://bit.ly/2ci1rnz
We all need to take action to prepare, now and throughout the year, for the types of emergencies that could affect us where we live, work, and also where we visit. It doesn’t take a ton of effort and by making it fun and entertaining; the kids will enjoy it too! Visit Save The Children for all of the resources to make preparing for disaster a ton of fun!