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Assembling a Disaster Supply Kit

Putting together a disaster supply kit can seem overwhelming, which is why many people do not do it. Premade kits are available, but can be expensive. A disaster supply kit is best when it is tailored to the needs of your own situation. Here is a guide on how to assemble a kit that will meet your needs. Stock the kit with items that you like. If someone in your family has a nut allergy, replace peanut butter with something else. Buy items that are best suited to you, and follow the schedule.

Spread it out over time and it is easier. Plan for the special needs for any infants, children, seniors, people with disabilities, and pets. Have enough cash in small bills as the ATM’s will be down till the power is restored. If you know how to use a camping stove, remember the fuel BUT camping stoves are NOT recommended for apartment dwellers or indoor cooking! Think about any tools that would be helpful. In eight weeks or less, you will be ready to go.

Involve the kids. Go to garage sales, have them look through the cabinets, or find things at a local swap meet. Make it fun and have them take part in creating it.

 

 

DISASTER SUPPLY KIT

 

WEEK ONE

 

Locate an easily accessible space

 

Purchase a large water tight container

 

WEEK TWO

 

Water: Determine the amount of water your situation will require. Each person requires one gallon of water per day. Include pets. Divide the amount so you will have enough in eight weeks.

 

Food- ready to eat (3 cans of tuna)

 

Cooking Utensils - can opener

 

Make copies of important documents & phone numbers

 

WEEK THREE

 

Water

 

Food- ready to eat (3 cans of fruit & 1 box of cereal)

 

Cooking utensils- spoons, cups

 

Heavy work gloves

 

Bleach

 

WEEK FOUR

 

Water

 

Cash

 

Food- ready to eat (3 cans of beans & canned meat)

 

Cooking Utensils-forks, plates, napkins, bowls

 

Warm clothes & rain gear for each family member

 

Disposable camera used to document any damage for insurance claims

 

WEEK FIVE

 

Water

 

Food- ready to eat (3 cans of soup & crackers)

 

Cooking utensils- camping stove

 

Unscented household bleach & eye dropper (for water purification)

 

Blankets & sleeping bags

 

WEEK SIX

 

Water

 

Food- ready to eat (Dried fruit & bottle juices)

 

Cooking Utensils - salt, pepper& any other spices

 

Personal hygiene items including toilet paper, feminine supplies, hand sanitizer & soap

 

Cash

 

Plastic sheeting, duct tape and utility knife for covering broken windows

 

WEEK SEVEN

 

Water

 

Food- ready to eat (2 jars of peanut butter w/ jam & nonfat dry milk)

 

Cooking utensils

 

Tools: crowbar, hammer & nails, staple gun, adjustable wrench & bungee cords

 

Large heavy duty bags

 

WEEK EIGHT

 

Water

 

Food - ready to eat (cookies & crackers)

 

Cooking utensils - any missing items that can be used.

 

Prescription medications and first aid supplies

 

Pet Needs

 

Cash

 

Many thanks to Benjamin Amyes, Disaster Response Manager in the Emergency Response Unit of the San Francisco Human Services Agency for generously sharing his tips on easily and affordably assembling a disaster supply kit!