WOOD RIVER — The Madison County Health Department will participate in National Preparedness Month in September.
One of the event’s key messages is to be self-reliant for three days without utilities, electricity, water service, access to a supermarket or local services, or maybe even without response from police, fire or rescue. Preparing can start with four important steps:
- Build an emergency supply kit
- Make a plan for what to do in an emergency and how you will get in contact with loved ones
- Be informed about emergencies that could happen in your community and identify sources of information that will be helpful before, during and after an emergency
- Get involved
Ready.gov offers lists and templates to help you know what to include in your kit and plan. They also have information about how to help specific populations prepare such as children, senior citizens and the disabled.
National Preparedness Month 2016 begins Sept. 1 and has 4 weekly themes, including:
- Sept. 4-10: Preparing Family & Friends
- Sept. 11-17: Preparing Through Service (see a local opportunity below)
- Sept. 18-24: Individual Preparedness
- Sept. 25-30: Lead Up to National Day of Action
Follow along on social media and see how others across America are preparing. Use the hashtags #NatlPrep, #YouthPrep or #PrepareAthon if you are conducting a preparedness exercise, tabletop exercise or sharing a preparedness-in-action moment.
For more information about the 2016 National Preparedness Month Campaign, visit ready.gov/september.
Become a volunteer
The health department is offering residents an opportunity to volunteer with the Medical Reserve Corps. The department will hold a volunteer orientation training from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 26, at the Madison County Health Department, 101 E. Edwardsville Road, Wood River. Volunteers will learn about the Madison County MRC, Public Health 101, Incident Command System, Strategic National Stockpile and Family Preparedness. To attend, contact Volunteer Coordinator Cathy Paone at (618) 296-6096 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Registration deadline is Monday, Sept. 19. Advanced registration is required to attend the training. Seating is limited. There is an opportunity for everyone to help; no medical experience is necessary.
Madison County Medical Reserve Corps is now part of the Gateway Volunteer Network in the bi-state area. It is a collaborative effort to bring people volunteering for public health emergencies together into one group to increase communication and build a stronger network of volunteers to improve emergency response capabilities. Visit facebook.com/gatewayvolunteernetwork for information and click on the Learn More Save Lives tab to sign up for information about volunteer opportunities.
For information about the Madison County Medical Reserve Corps, visit www.madisonchd.org and click on the MRC tab. Information also is available on the health department’s social media pages: facebook.com/MadisonCHD, @MadisonCHD on Twitter, and youtube.com/MadCoHealth.