Since September is a five-week month, I decided to hold over the week four tips from FEMA to split the difference on weeks four and five. This week’s topic is teaching youth about preparedness. Oh, be still my heart! Right up my alley.
I had the distinct pleasure of teaching an emergency preparedness course for our homeschool co-op during the spring 2021 term, and I think it went over well. We started with general emergency preparedness information, with a large resource bundle from the offerings over at FEMA; then moved into a Stop the Bleed class where the teens learned and practiced wound packing, tourniquet application, and more. We finished out with select portions of the USCCA Emergency First Aid Fundamentals course, including putting together their own first aid kits for home, car, and more. I think their favorites were using the tourniquet on me and going over first aid kits with a “tour” of our kits and my car – since many of them are learning to drive or about to, that really seemed to hit home as they asked questions about the storage spaces, spare tire, and other supplies too.
Anywho, I personally feel that building resilient communities starts with our youth. Kids are always excited to learn something new, and when they find their passion, they’ll help spread the word to anyone who will listen. In our class, we discussed family-specific issues as one family had a baby on the way; others have elders with health issues that they wanted to be ready to help with; another knew of severe allergies and wanted to be ready to respond appropriately. We also had the chance to discuss concerns the teens might have if babysitting – and now they have a course to put on their resumes when applying for jobs. Even if it doesn’t become a long term interest, they are at least set up for success on finding resources for how to be ready as they move around with the military, head off to work or school away from their families, and the like. It doesn’t get any better than this.
Here’s what Ready.gov has to say for the end of National Preparedness Month:
Talk to your kids about preparing for emergencies and what to do in case you are separated. Reassure them by providing information about how they can get involved.
That might not seem like much to get you started, so here are some additional links:
- Resources for kids, teens, families, and educators, including printables and activities
- Family Preparedness 101 – a book by my friend Morgan Rogue (and proofed by yours truly – no financial/affiliate ties in the link though)
- “Is Your Family Prepared for Your Death?” – an article of mine published over at The Organic Prepper. Not necessarily something to read to the kids, of course, but some insights to ponder if you have children, grandchildren, even pets that will need care in the event of your death. As mentioned by some folks in the comments, a will isn’t necessarily the be-all and end-all in the grand scheme of things, but having legal documents in place for your dependents, heirs, and the legal system of your area is a good start on things. If you have children old enough to discuss the issue, this might be the time to get their feedback on who THEY would like to be with if care is needed while you’re in the hospital or should pass away. Sometimes the person we adults would pick isn’t actually the best fit and the kids can give us insights on that.