When a natural disaster happens, your entire world can literally be turned upside down.
When we see images of wildfires, tornadoes, and hurricanes on social media or TV, the most that we can usually experience is a shared sense of shock and empathy. But going through a natural disaster yourself is a completely different experience altogether, and unfortunately, there are some areas of the country that are bound to experience these kinds of natural disasters than others.
While the frequency of wildfires in California, hurricanes in the south, and tornadoes in America’s heartland may be ominous, there are many things that you and your family can do to prepare for a natural disaster. Knowing where to go, what to do, and whom you can contact for help can empower you and your family to take the bold steps necessary to protect yourself and reclaim your safety, faster.
5 Things to Do After a Natural Disaster
While we often have little warning prior to a natural disaster, understanding ahead of time what natural disasters are most likely to occur in your area can help you and your family plan ahead by creating an Emergency Plan. It pays to know ahead of time where you can go, and what you will do in the event of a fire, flood, or tornado.
Contact your insurance company. Your insurer will generally be aware of the kinds of natural disasters that can occur in your area and will have a plan of action as well as a list of resources available for you to utilize.
The Department of Labor has programs to assist with unemployment in the event of a natural disaster that disrupts your income or business, and there are other federal and state programs available to help in addition to the DOL.
Connect and check-in. Listen to the radio to be made aware of updates, shelter areas, and also make sure to check in with friends, family, and neighbors. You are more likely to be able to coordinate and receive any assistance you might need when you can be reached and are aware of what resources are currently being made available.
Contact the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). They will be able to provide links and resources to local agencies that are in your area and can help with shelter, food, clothing, medical care, and other assistance programs.
You can also contact the Disaster Assistance Improvement Program (DAIP), which provides information and resources to those experiencing a natural disaster.
Preparing ahead, and knowing that there are resources available to help you and your loved ones during a natural disaster can help you and your family regain your sense of safety and normalcy faster, and place you in a better position to take the next steps.
The things that we take for granted, like having a place to sleep at night quickly become apparent after we are displaced from our home by a fire, flood, or storm, but luckily there are great resources to help with this too!
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