NEWS RELEASE: FOR
September 1, 2011
CONTACT: Heather Foster,
Eighth Annual National Preparedness Month (NPM) Encourages
West Virginians to Remember and Prepare
Since 2004, September has been designated as National Preparedness
Month (NPM) to encourage households, businesses and communities to
prepare and plan for emergencies. The event, now in its eighth year,
is a nationwide effort hosted by FEMA’s Ready Campaign and the
national Citizen Corps program. To mark the ten year anniversary of
9/11, the theme for this year’s NPM is “A Time to Remember. A Time to
“Emergencies begin at the local level,” said Stephanie Yu,
executive director of Volunteer West Virginia. “The first 36 hours
after an emergency, responders are helping people most in need.
Families should be prepared to take care of themselves during that
time. National Preparedness Month is a great opportunity for families
and organizations to learn ways to become better prepared for
emergencies of all types.”
In the event of an emergency, one of the key messages of NPM is to
have enough supplies to be self-reliant for three days without
utilities and electricity, water service, access to a supermarket or
local services, or maybe even without response from police, fire or
rescue. Preparing can start with three important steps:
1. Get an emergency
2. Make a plan for what
to do in an emergency.
3. Be informed about
emergencies that could happen in your community, and identify sources
of information in your community that will be helpful before, during
and after an emergency.
This year, several organizations are coordinating activities that
range from training communities to prepare for emergencies to
conducting service projects that show appreciation for first
responders and others who often step up during times of disaster.
Several activities are featured below.
- Volunteer West Virginia, in partnership with Canaan United
Methodist Church in Charleston, local Boy and Girl Scout troops,
RSVP volunteers and other community members will gather on September
11 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. to assemble and deliver thank you notes and
baskets of appreciation to 20 local fire, police and emergency
medical services stations. The goal for the day is to reach
approximately 300 first responders. The service project is open to
the public for participation, but groups must provide their own
transportation to and from the church and stations. Interested
individuals and groups can meet at Canaan United Methodist Church,
located on the corner of Roane Street and Maryland Avenue in
Charleston. Materials for the baskets and maps to local first
responder stations will be provided.
- The Monongalia County Technical Education Center (MTEC) is
sponsoring a school-wide fundraiser on 9/11 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Preparedness pamphlets will be distributed and a 9/11 tribute will
be held. Local police, fire and city department officials will serve
as guest speakers for the event. Games for children will be provided
and adults can enjoy an antique car show as well.
- The City of Charleston is coordinating a 9/11 memorial at Haddad
Riverfront Park at 8:30 a.m. on 9/11. The Charleston Metro Band will
also perform at Haddad Riverfront Park at 4:30 p.m. that day.
- Community members can attend a non-denominational church service
at the Charleston Civic Center at 6 p.m on 9/11.
- Several emergency preparedness trainings and seminars will also
take place throughout the month of September in various parts of the
state. For a detailed list of events, visit the NPM Calendar at
Individuals and organizations are encouraged to sign up as National
Preparedness Month Coalition Members, which allows access to resources
and connections to thousands of fellow members across the country to
share ways to participate and get a community involved in NPM.
Preparedness goes beyond fire alarms, smoke detectors, dead-bolt
locks and extra food in the pantry. By following simple preparedness
steps in advance, West Virginians can reduce the impact of emergencies
on themselves, their family and their businesses.
For more information, individuals can visit
www.ready.gov or call 1-800-BE-READY, for a list of events or to
access free materials that will help them prepare their families and
Citizen Corps is a state and local initiative to involve everyone
in building a culture of preparedness. West Virginia Citizen Corps is
a program of Volunteer West Virginia, the state’s Commission for
National and Community Service. At the state level, the West Virginia
Citizen Corps program promotes the message of citizen preparedness and
supports the integration of local trained disaster volunteers into the
state’s emergency plans. Across the state, local Citizen Corps
Councils and volunteers actively engage in promoting and enhancing
Mitzi L. M.
Communications Coordinator | Volunteer West Virginia
Avenue | Charleston, W.Va. 25302
558-0111 | Toll Free: (800) WV-HELPS | Fax: (304) 558-0101
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