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Teens can take lead in disaster planning
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Dear Editor:


We need to make sure that our families implement a plan to insure survival and safety when disaster strikes, especially since hurricane season is here. I believe that specifically delegating partial responsibility of family preparedness to teenagers in the home comes from my realization that the majority of teenagers are dynamic and determined to make a positive contribution within society. It is important that we start with the family: the fundamental unit of society. In order to fortify your home like I did, teenagers such as me should facilitate and follow through on these three procedures…

1. Have a family plan for all emergencies

a. Make sure that each family member has a list of phone numbers on them at all times that they can call in case of an emergency.

b. Learn safety procedures for weather disasters, safe evacuation, and a family meeting place.

c. Have periodic family council meetings; where you and your family can discuss what courses of action to take in the event of any disaster.

2. Have a food, water, fuel, and cash reserve.

a. Encourage your family to forgo unnecessary vacations, cars, or other excessive temporal wants to obtain family-size 72 hour kits (5-day kits if necessary).

b. Slowly build up your reserves by separating wants from needs and by decreasing the amount of money spent on wants.

c. Remember to include a first aid kit, family medication, and legal/medical documents in you 3-5 day emergency preparedness kits.

d. It is always better to have your home in order and to be prepared for disaster before it strikes.

3. Have frequent family meetings where safety procedures are reviewed and kept fresh. (Make sure that you rotate your food and water storage by slowly using it up while periodically replacing your storage).

Freedom, fun, and friends are topics of interest to teenagers but we mustn’t forget how crucial it is that parents and caregivers know accurate information about where we really are at all times should we need to be contacted. I know that we may not have a lot of capital to individually to pursue these goals (such as food storage) but they can help to motivate parents and encourage family members to forgo temporal satisfaction to obtain the greater good, securing the family against disasters that are sure to come.



Christopher Michael Bourque

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