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Jan 07
Emergency Preparedness: It’s Not Just for Adults!

Author: Yong-Bee Lim, Graduate Student Intern,Division for At-Risk Individuals, Behavioral Health, and Community Resilience

Hurricanes, floods and other disasters can be scary for anyone – but they are particularly hard on kids and families need to be ready to respond to emergencies together. Planning discussions and preparedness steps should not just include adults; children can and should be involved, too. Including your children in your family’s disaster preparedness planning can help give them the confidence to deal with unexpected situations and mitigate feelings of anxiety and powerlessness in an actual emergency.

Wondering how to get started? Fun, interactive resources are available to help children and teenagers become part of your family’s emergency planning and preparedness process:

  • Sesame Street’s Let’s Get Together! Planning Together for Emergencies is a series of videos, worksheets, and activity books that engages both parents and children in the basic planning steps for emergencies.
  • The Federal Emergency Management Agency offers family-oriented, preparedness-themed activities such as word searches, go-bag games and emergency-kit scavenger hunts. FEMA also collaborated with the Flat Stanley Project to create FEMA Flat Stanley and Flat Stella to educate students on the need to be prepared for emergencies and disasters, as well as ways to help their families nurture more resilient households.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers teens the preparedness knowledge to survive even a zombie apocalypse. Zombie Preparedness, which includes resources such as a zombie blog, posters, novellas, and social media content, encourages teens to learn the basics of emergency preparedness and response using a fun, fictitious scenario.
  • American Red Cross Masters of Disaster curriculum is tailored to elementary and middle school ages to educate children through a series of ready-to-go lesson plans. The program helps children prepare for emergency events and build skills to adapt to unexpected situations.

Still looking for more ways to plan and prepare with your children? Visit FEMA’s page on youth preparedness.

Have you and your family found ways to get your kids involved in the family’s disaster plan? Let the community know what worked well - or didn’t – in a comment to this blog post.

 

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Cyber Security
Exercises & Trainings
Hospital Preparedness
Innovations
Medical Countermeasures
National Health Security
Observances
Public Health Preparedness
Response & Recovery