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Filtering by Tag: #redcross


Gina Giordan

GO BAG.jpg

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” ― Benjamin Franklin

“I will prepare and some day my chance will come.” ― Abraham Lincoln

"Expect the best, plan for the worst!"  That's my motto to live by.  In today's world, with exploding deadly lava,  wildfires, catastrophic hurricanes, earthquakes, terrorist attacks (the list goes on)  it's a good idea to prepare you and your loved ones for any emergency situation.  

Friday, June 1st, is the official mark of the 2018 Hurricane season.  What if during an emergency you are separated from a loved one?  Do you have a plan?  Does your child know what to do if they are separated from you during a natural disaster?  It's no surprise during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, there were more than 5000 cases of missing children after the storm.  Hurricane Katrina survivor, Marceline, shared her harrowing story with "Save the Children."  She was separated from her 2-year-old daughter for a week.  Would your child have the necessary skills to find their way back to you? 

These days, relying on our cell phones for everything means most of us would have trouble remembering actual contact numbers or addresses without using their cell phone.  Do you know all your loved ones direct contact numbers off the top of your head?  What about the actual address of an emergency evacuation route or bus stop?  Sometimes a nasty Nor'easter doesn't come with a timely warning and can leave you without power and water for days. No power means your local stores and gas stations are closed.  Are you prepared if a violent storm hit tonight leaving you without power for weeks?  Preparing yourself and your loved ones ahead of time, for any emergency is key. 

For starters, make sure you actually have a list of cell phone numbers and addresses of the important people in your life.  That means in addition to loved ones you have contact numbers for care takers, doctors, emergency care, hospitals etc.  We suggest you actually hand write this contact list and make photo copies to keep handy and distribute to the other people on your list.  A written contact list would be crucial in the event both the internet and cell phone service are down.  In addition to having emergency contact information on hand, it is important that you and your family create an emergency location to meet up in case all other communication are cut off.

One of the best ways to prepare you and your family in case of any emergency is, a GO BAG!  A decade ago, the suggestion of a GO BAG may have seemed extreme but, these days being prepared could save you from some serious aggravation or possibly save a life.  Whether you live in a high-rise in the city or a home in the suburbs, you can customize a GO BAG for each person in your household. A suggested list of GO BAG items are posted at this link: and detailed below.  Don't forget to include a copy of emergency contact information in each GO BAG!  



You can also create an emergency GO BAG specifically for kids!  The options of what to include in your GO BAG are endless.  THE WANNA suggests you include an "In Case of Emergency" or ICE card in your child's GO BAG.  Amazon sells a version for around $10 bucks here.  Ultimately, customizing a bag to fit your specific needs are obviously the best way to go.  But, If you are way too busy to customize a GO BAG, you can buy a pre-packaged "survival" bag or "family emergency"  kit.  This website, has a slew of options to choose from. 

Make a bag. Buy a bag... Whatever you choose, just do it!  It's better to be SAFE than SORRY!

Have a fun, memorable and SAFE summer season 2018!  




In the event of an emergency that requires you to evacuate, everyone in your household should have a Go Bag packed and ready to go. Your Go Bag should be a sturdy and easy to carry backpack or duffle bag containing things you would want to have with you if you have to leave in a hurry. Items to consider for your Go Bag include:

  • Bottled water and nonperishable food, such a s granola bars
  • Personal hygiene items (toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, wet wipes, etc)
  • Flashlight, hand-rank or battery-operated AM/FM radio, and extra batteries
  • Portable cell phone charger
  • Notepad, pen/pencil, and marker
  • Local street maps (paper version)
  • Spare home/vehicle keys
  • Whistle or bell
  • First aid kit
  • Dust mask to reduce inhalation of dust and other debris
  • Work gloves
  • A change of clothing (long sleeve shirt/pants, rain gear, sturdy footwear, etc.)
  • Copies of important documents (insurance/medical cards, contact lists, identification, marriage and birth certificates, etc.) in a portable, waterproof container or plastic bag
  • Back-up medical/assistive equipment and supplies
  • A list of the medications you take, why you take them, and the dosages
  • Cash, in small bills
  • Supplies for your service animal or pet

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recommends assembling a kit of basic supplies to last three days (72 hours), in the event of a disaster. The kit should be checked at least twice per year to ensure that components have not expired. Identify an easily accessible storage location for the kit, and ensure that all family members are aware of this location. This kit should include the following:

  • Water
    • One gallon per day, per person. This provides for both drinking and sanitary uses.
    • Include additional water for pets, as needed
  • Food
    • Non-perishable items
    • Ready-to-eat canned foods, and a manual can opener
    • Ensure adequate supply for each family member
      • Consider special dietary or other needs
  • Include pet food, if applicable
  • Handheld AM/FM radio and NOAA Weather Tone Alert Radio. Appropriate spare batteries.
  • Cellular phone
  • Chargers for portable electronic devices (phone, laptop, tablet, etc.)
  • Flashlight and appropriate spare batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Whistle or bell
  • Dust mask to reduce inhalation of dust and other debris
    • Adequate supply for family members
  • Plastic sheeting and duct tape to seal windows, doors and other openings, if advised to do so.
  • Pre-moistened wipes, plastic garbage bags and zip ties for toileting.
  • Wrench and/or pliers to shut off utilities
  • Local street maps (paper version)
  • Key documents including insurance documents, contact lists, identification, etc. in a portable, waterproof container
  • Medical information (history, allergies, etc.) for each family member.
  • Personal medical/assistive equipment, as appropriate
  • Prescription medications, including a list the medications you take, why you take them and the dosages
  • Prescription glasses, if needed
  • Diapers and formula, if needed
  • Spare home/vehicle keys
  • Cash (small bills), change for telephones, etc.
  • Sleeping bag/blankets
    • Adequate supply for all family members
  • Changes of clothes for each family member
    • Long sleeved shirt
    • Long pants
    • Sturdy shoes
    • Appropriate personal hygiene supplies for each family member
  • Unscented chlorine bleach
    • For disinfecting purposes: dilute nine parts water to one part bleach
    • For water purification: sixteen drops per gallon of water
  • Fire extinguisher (portable size)
  • Matches and weatherproof container
  • Paper plates, cups, eating utensils, paper towels
  • Age-appropriate books, games, etc. for children (if applicable)

Additional Information and Links



  • A small backpack 
  • Waterproof flashlight or mini - Lantern
  • Extra batteries
  • Shampoo/Body Wash
  • Toothbrush and Toothpaste
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Bandages with Antibiotic Cream
  • Hand wipes
  • Tummy relief (Tummygize Essential Oil)
  • Gauze pads
  • Snacks — granola bars and fruit pouches
  • Bottled water
  • Change of clothes
  • Extra shoes
  • $20 in small bills and change
  • Paper and crayons
  • Activity kits
  • Comfort item — stuffed animal, blanket, etc
  • ICE Contact Card



Caroline Slusarczyk

Tennessee Highway Patrol/Reuters

Tennessee Highway Patrol/Reuters

Country singer Dolly Parton has set up a fund to aid the now homeless families who lost everything in the recent Tennessee wildfire.  The fire, which originated from the Great Smoky Mountains, destroyed much of the town Gatlinburg, leaving 13 dead.  Parton’s hometown is Sevier County, Tennessee, right in the same area as the affected Gatlinburg.  Parton’s “Dollywood” theme park is also in the region where the fires raged, but was not affected.

This tragedy hit very close to home for Parton, who said she was “heartbroken.”  Parton described the wildfires as destroying “the same mountains where I grew up and where my people call home.”

Parton’s fund, called “My People Fund,” vows to donate $1,000 a month to each of the families affected by the wildfire.  In her My People Fund video statement Parton said, “We want to provide a hand up to all those families that have lost everything in the fires.  And to recover, we want to make sure that the Dollywood Foundation provides $1,000 a month to all of those families that have lost their homes in the fires until they get back up on their feet.  I know it has been a trying time for my people, and this assistance will help.”

There are currently over 200 people affected by the fire in Red Cross shelters in Sevier County, but it is not apparent how many families will be qualified for Parton’s monthly fund donations.  Parton gave credit to the Red Cross for helping with the suffering families, but urged individual people to donate to My People Fund to aid the Tennessee families as well.

If you wish to offer help to the uprooted families, check out Dolly’s My People Fund to donate.

Ya Know You Wanna!