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Is Your Family Prepared?

Tornadoes take lives and cause hundreds of millions of dollars of damage each year in the U.S.

Tornadoes take lives and cause hundreds of millions of dollars of damage each year in the U.S.

This post is part of the Science Tuesday feature series on the USDA blog. Check back each week as we showcase stories and news from the USDA’s rich science and research portfolio.

Every family should take steps to prepare for the disaster they hope never comes.  The Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN) has recently made two new family disaster preparedness resources available.

North Dakota State University’s Becky Koch led the effort to publish the new “EDEN Family Preparedness” course, whose classroom delivered materials are available FREE online. These materials can help teach families and individuals how to make family disaster kits, develop a family disaster plan, and be informed about and prepared for various disasters. There is a downloadable instructor’s guide, a narrated video PowerPoint Presentation (in right-sized “chunks”), and a complete PowerPoint presentation file.

Also, University of Missouri Extension has created an electronic template to guide families through the disaster plan development process. The template is designed to be downloaded and filled out electronically (or printed and completed by hand).

Speaking of printing things out, the University of Missouri also offers the following advice:

“Creating an electronic document is convenient; however, it is essential to have paper copies of the plan available because electric and wireless services may be disrupted during an emergency. A copy of the plan should be stored with your disaster supply kit in the home. A second copy should be stored off-site with a relative, friend or at work.”

Our friends at USDA/APHIS Animal Care will be happy to note that the plan provides a section to include vital information on companion animal family members. This bolsters the companion animal information linked to EDEN from Auburn University and from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Follow the links above to access these materials, or see all the useful disaster education resources EDEN has to offer at and

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