Military Families and Disaster Preparedness

Friday Field Notes banner image: Featuring engaging stories from practitioners about how partnerships with Cooperative Extension help build Community Capacity to support military service men and women and their families.

Disaster preparedness is a crucial part of any community, but for military families, preparing for a disaster can look differently compared to the civilian population.  Military families have additional documents to keep track of, family members who might have special needs, or may even be separated from family due to being stationed outside of the United States.  For these reasons, MFLN Community Capacity Building wants to highlight some resources for our service providers that can be of great significance to military families no matter where they are located in the case that a disaster strikes.

  • Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN): EDEN is a collaborative multi-state effort by Cooperative Extension Services with the aim of reducing the harmful effects of disasters on citizens. Each state as well as 3 US territories has delegates of various disciplines represented through EDEN.  You can view information about your state’s delegates and programs by visiting EDEN’s website and clicking on “State Information”.
  • Ready: Ready is a national public service campaign with the goal of educating Americans on how to prepare for, respond to, and mitigate emergencies through public involvement. Ready has information specific to situations that military families face with resources for each branch of the military as well.air forcecoast guardnavy
  • USDA NIFA: As a federal partner with the Cooperative Extension System (CES), the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture collaborates with land grant universities across the country, funding programs that advance agriculture-related science. NIFA is partnered with the government, non-profit, and private organizations so that their research and education can reach communities where individuals need solutions to agricultural problems including disasters, such as disease outbreaks and housing concerns.  CES operates at the federal, state, and local levels in order to best serve communities and the unique challenges that they face.  NIFA’s website also has information for youth programs where children and adolescents can also learn the importance of disaster preparedness as it relates to agriculture.

Cooperative Extension System

These resources are only a few in the toolbox of those who prepare for disasters professionally.  Our hope is that service providers can explore these resources and use them as a foundation for helping military families in the event of an emergency.  Over the next several weeks, Friday Field Notes will explore different concentration areas of MFLN and how each one has a role play in disaster preparedness as well as the resources that they offer.

Check out more blogs in this series!

Personal Finance – Financial well-being before, during, and after a disaster is much more than simply having ample savings or having cash handy.

Nutrition & Wellness – When it comes to disasters, the food we consume can be impacted in a major way. As service providers, staying on top of the resources available in your community at the local, state, and nationwide level can greatly increase the ease of service delivered to the military families.

Family Transitions – Family Transitions’ focus on resilience is a relevant topic when addressing disaster preparedness since factors contributing to resilience can determine the outcome of an individual or family in the aftermath of a disaster.

Early Intervention – Resources from Early Intervention can be helpful when a disaster strikes and to take a holistic approach that considers the needs of the entire family.

Family Development – With a focus on prevention, the Family Development team has fantastic resources for service providers and families to increase their awareness and knowledge of disaster preparedness from a holistic perspective that includes family members of all ages.

Military Caregiving –  Having a plan in place before a disaster is important for families everywhere, especially those with special needs and their caregivers.

Network Literacy – Disaster preparedness requires collaboration across many different professions.  Building and strengthening networks ultimately benefits military families in the end.

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