Do we rely on electronics to much?

Today I had to drop my phone off due to some software issues it was having.   The tech took a quick look at my phone and said that it needed a diagnostic test run on it.  They told me it would be a least an hour.  I left the store with no phone.

I had some errands to run so it was not a big deal per se.  However during my phone separation I needed to find a location of something else – I reached for my “non existent” phone.  I that moment I had a thought about my reliance on my electronics.

I have a firm grasp on several skills that I have turned over to my phone to do.   Map reading is an excellent example.  I now have several apps that will guide me to a location, one for street maps and another for outdoor activities.  I do not believe that I have picked up a paper map for my outdoor activities in quite awhile.

This leads me to the question of reliance on electronics.  I believe that for our average day to day activities they are great.  In a disaster they may not work.  Do you have a backup plan for this in your emergency operations plan?

Bartering

Money is a great medium for trading.  The money system works off of some basic concepts.  In my opinion is we are trading our time and effort to someone (or an entity) for a paycheck.  We then take some of that paycheck (money) to trade for services or goods.

In a disaster this system may not work.  The normal mode of the exchange of money for goods and services may not be in place, especially with the modern use of electronic exchange.

This is why it is important to be ready to barter.  Bartering is the exchange of one good or service for another.  Having some extra supplies to barter with is an excellent idea to include in the planning process.  My suggestion is to store extra necessities (food, water, medical supplies) for this purpose.

Bartering may also work in non disaster situations.  Learn the art of bartering before it is a necessity.  Think outside the box in the next month or so, and see if you can barter with someone to get what you need, while providing something they need.

I personally have some consulting services I could trade for something.  Anyone?

Free Course

I have created a online course that covers Emergency Planning.  It is free until April 30 with the code “Kick off”.

Here is the link:

https://www.udemy.com/basic-emergency-planning/

New Endeavors

As I start a new endeavor in my life I would like to remind everyone that emergency planning is an ongoing process.  Because there is a change in my life my emergency plan needs to be reviewed and updated as needed.  Your emergency plan should be current and reflect the various parts of your life.

Happy Easter

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket when you are planning for emergencies.

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.

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