This Citizen Corps News Digest is provided by FEMA's Individual & Community Preparedness Division to highlight community preparedness and resilience resources and activities recently announced by federal agencies and Citizen Corps partners.

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Are Your Finances Ready for a Disaster?

Building emergency supply kits, developing emergency plans, and participating in disaster drills are important emergency preparedness activities. Another important part of being prepared includes being financially ready before an emergency happens? 

April is Financial Literacy Month , which serves as an effort to teach Americans how to establish and maintain healthy financial habits. This includes knowing what to do if you are impacted by a disaster.

“Just a couple of months ago a tornado hit about five miles from my home,” said Rod Griffin during Prepareathon's Financial Preparedness Periscope .  “And, one of things we saw was that personal documents end up in the wind, literally.” Rod works for Experian, a company which performs as a credit bureau.

The Emergency Financial First Aid Kit (EFFAK) , a joint publication from Operation Hope and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, contains information for you to prepare now for a financial emergency. It includes guidance on having adequate insurance, a plan to pay your bills, and accessing your important records  as well as information on establishing accounts to help you get back on your feet faster.

Share with us on social media when you complete your EFFAK by posting, “I've completed my Emergency Financial First Aid Kit and you should too!” #Prepareathon #FLM2017

Financial Preparedness Resources

Financial preparedness is one of the many ways to participate in Prepareathon (formerly America's PrepareAthon!), a grassroots, community-based campaign for action to get families, organizations, and entire communities better prepared for emergencies. 

As part of the Prepareathon campaign, we invite you to register your preparedness action at .


Turn Around Don't Drown

Flooding is the most common natural disaster in the United States, and most flood-related deaths can be prevented if you understand the force and power of rushing flood water. When you see flood waters ahead: Turn Around Don't Drown .

Stay safe by staying out of flood waters before and after the floods or storms have passed.

If you come upon flood water, you may not know how deep the water is or what is in the water that you cannot see including hazardous materials, sharp items or downed power lines. Consider these facts to be flood smart:

  • Just six (6) inches of moving water can knock you down.
  • Just one (1) foot of water can sweep your vehicle off the roadway.
  • If your vehicle is trapped in rapidly moving water, stay in the vehicle.
  • If water is moving at a high velocity and is rapidly rising in the vehicle, exit the vehicle immediately, seek refuge on the roof of the vehicle, and signal for help. 
  • If your vehicle stalls, leave it immediately (unless water is moving at a high velocity) and move to higher ground . Rapidly rising water can engulf the vehicle and its occupants, sweeping them away.

For more information on how to prepare and stay safe download the Prepareathon How to Prepare for a Flood guide.


72 Hours of Supplies

Do you have emergency supplies to last your family at least 72 hours in the event of an emergency?

After a disaster or emergency, local officials and relief workers are not always able to reach everyone immediately. An emergency situation may impact the ability of emergency responders to reach you and your loved ones. It is a good idea to plan for the loss of basic services, such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment, and telephones for at least 72-hours at minimum. Having non-perishable food, water, and medical supplies for several days is even better.  Your supply kit should contain certain items to help you manage during these outages. The items listed below are a great starting point. You may also need to consider medications and food for pets. recommends a basic emergency supply kit with the following items:

  • Water , one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation.
  • Food , at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food (food that does not need refrigeration).
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio and a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both.
  • Flashlight and extra batteries.
  • First aid kit.
  • Whistle to signal for help.
  • Dust mask to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place .
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags, and plastic ties for personal sanitation.
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities .
  • Manual can opener for food.
  • Local maps.
  • Cell phone with chargers, inverter, or solar charger.

Once you build or update your emergency kit , take a moment and register your preparedness activity on .


Important Dates to Remember


Disclaimer: The reader recognizes that the federal government provides links and informational data on various disaster preparedness resources and events and does not endorse any non-federal events, entities, organizations, services or products. Please let us know about other events and services for individual and community preparedness that could be included in future newsletters by contacting:

About FEMA

FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

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