6/15/2008

Father's Protect Your Children

Susanna, who writes the blog Emergency Childbirthing, linked to this post here.
This being Father's Day 2008, reflect on what you need to do to protect your wife and children should an emergency strike.
My experience when our house burned down (Tip: Keep all your identity papers, computer passwords, financial and insurance information in a fire proof box) has taught me that if you stick to the basics, the basics will save their lives...and yours.
Emergency preparedness, response, mitigation, and management can seem so complicated it is often neglected by fathers. Still, when a disaster strikes, your family will turn to you for what to do.
Make sure you are ready to look them in the eye and state clearly what to do by preparing in the present for the future disaster. Weather being the weather and human nature being human nature, you will be called on to take care of your family in an emergency. Below are some links to get you started.
There is a thick Southern voice I first heard in the U.S. Air Force that plays in my head when I think of, plan for, and act in emergencies: "Details will save your life!!!" And they will. Preparing the right plan with the right supplies that is unique to you and your family IN ADVANCE is all you need to remember. The rest is easy.
Keep in mind that the government is a reactionary force in emergencies. Like the police, they react to the event...often painfully slowly...and you are on your own. (See: Aesolp's fable The Ant and the Grasshopper.)
Tip: insurance companies have been dealing with emergencies for years and have excellent tools USAA, for example.)
Plain emergency management is like plain English: everyone understands it and the job gets done. Just as plain English is often hard to find, so too plain emergency management...but it is out there.
Tip: Use free resources such as the American Red Cross, CERT video training, and
the National Incident Management System for the emergency management professionals. Your job is to make sure there is enough of everything (bug out kit [i.e. emergency supplies] antibiotic cream, bandages, water, food, solar flashlights and lights, fully-charged cell phones, and a communication plan, solar charger for your laptop) in place to make it through the first critical 72 hours of the event.
Emergencies seem to strike at the most unlikely time.
Be prepared to react and overcome.
God bless you in your efforts and may you, and God, protect you and yours if and when disaster strikes.
As my own departed father used to say, "God helps those who help themselves." Amen.

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