More thoughts on Volunteers

Many agencies depend heavily on volunteers. The volunteers bring skills and man power to the organization that are needed.  Generally this occurs during a time of need.

If you are a volunteer I would like to personally thank you for the time that you give in what ever organization your are with. THANK YOU.

What kind of skills can I volunteer?

The quick answer is almost any skill is going to be needed during a disaster.  Additionally many skills are needed during the day to day operations of a volunteer agency.

You have skills that can be used.  These skill range from office work, to construction, to warehouse, to specialized skills.  The skills you would bring to a volunteer agency are very important.  The agency you choose to volunteer with would be happy to have someone with your skill set.

I challenge you to find an agency in the next couple of days and contact them.  Find out when their next meeting is and go volunteer some time and skills.

Volunteer time

Many people believe that there is a huge time commitment associated with volunteering.  The reality is that many volunteer organizations do not require a large amount of time.

Many volunteer agencies require 1 – 3 hours per month.  This is not that much time, it can be compared to watching a movie.  However if you want to be more involved you can spend a large amount of time helping out people.

Look at your time schedule and figure out when you can volunteer some time, and go do it.

Why Volunteer?

Aw, that is the question.  The time and effort to volunteer can be considerable.

I believe that volunteering has several benefits.  The first one is that generally training is available through a volunteer agency.  And in addition, you get to collaborate with people that may have a wide variety of expertise.  Many of the personnel that run a volunteer agencies have had various additional training.  These people could be a awesome source of information to you.

Which reminds me I better check on when the next MRC meeting is.  Anyone want to join me?

Volunteer

Many people are forward thinking enough to have made plans for themselves.  These are the types of people that volunteer agencies are desperately in need of.

There are a number of volunteer agencies that work in the “disaster” field.  The two that I am most familiar with are the American Red Cross ( redcross.org ) and the Medical Reserve Corps ( medicalreservecorps.gov ).  Both organizations are happy to find people that know how to be prepared for emergencies.  The Medical Reserve Corps is always looking for both medical and non medical people.

Now go find an organization to volunteer with.  You may find it to be a great place to share about preparation and planning.

A little help from above

Found this on Facebook.
IMG_0554

Now go eat

Many people buy emergency food supplies and put them on the shelf. In many cases they do not know what the food is like because they don’t ever eat it.

My challenge to you is to make a meal from your emergency food supply in the next couple of days. This will do two things; 1) You will learn how to make the food, and what supplies will be needed to accomplish this. 2) You will learn what the food tastes like.

A large portion of my food supply is MREs. In the military many of us would mix and match packages to make a more flavor-able meal. I think that crackers and coco mixed with a little water makes a great dessert. I have even heard there is a cookbook just for MREs floating around out there somewhere.

Food Smoking

There are a numbers of ancient societies that used smoking as a way to preserve food. This form of preparation is a tried and true way to preserve food.

This form of preservation does take some time, but the effort is well worth it. I personally like to smoke food for both eating at the time the food is prepared, and also for long term storage. I believe that it is the best way to preserve high quality taste with food. I like to make jerky from a variety of meats. I also eat the jerky on a regular basis.

I have been in contact with a local company rep and have been able to work out a deal for my readers on a BBQ / Smoker grill. Their website is: http://www.traegergrills.com/. I have added a page to this website called “Traeger Pellet Grills” with all the contact information for the guy I know. Please feel free to contact him and take advantage of the deal he is offering.

No, really take advantage of this deal (it is a good one).

Freeze Dried Food

Today there are many options when it comes to food storage. Freeze dried food is a great way to build a emergency food supply.

Freeze dried foods offer several advantages. First the selection of food is nearly endless. Second the selection of food is more like the foods we all eat on a daily basis; fruits, vegetables, soups, main dishes, and desserts. The shelf life on these foods are also exceptional.

Many of these foods come in both cans and pouches. Cans are a great way to store food at home, while the pouches are an ideal way to use on the go. I personally like to put some pouches of fruits (I like strawberries) in my hiking back pack for flavor.

The Ready Store states, “Freeze dried food offers the same nutritional quality as fresh produce while still sitting on the shelf for 25-30 years. All you have to do is add water and wait for the fruits, vegetables, snacks or meals to rehydrate.”

As the Ready Store states you need to have water available for rehydration. If this is an option that you choose please adjust your water storage accordingly. It is not unusual to have to double your water supply for rehydration purposes.

I am signing off so I can find some pouches of fruit.

MREs

If you have served in the military you are familiar with MREs. You are also familiar with the rush to get the good meals when the case is opened.

MREs make good food supplies. They have a long shelf life and are easy to store (they take up very little room). They also fit nicely in backpacks. I usually have one with me whenever I am hiking – just in case. They are also easy to prepare and are self contained. Additionally the have a high calorie count that will provide energy when you need it.

There are a number of manufactures that make MREs. I suggest you go to the Ready Store link and view some of the choices they have.

Anyone want to trade this vegan meal for anything – anyone?

When the moment of truth arrives, the time for prior planning has passed. Is there a plan?