This Citizen Corps News Digest is provided by FEMA's Individual & Community Preparedness Division to highlight community preparedness and resilience resources and activities recently announced by federal agencies and Citizen Corps partners.

DHS -FEMA Updates

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Announcing Seven Simple Steps to Starting A Whole Community Preparedness Program

FEMA's “ Preparedness Activities for Communities Everywhere ” tools (available in English and Spanish) are designed to educate individuals and communities about simple steps they can take to become more prepared.

FEMA's Individual and Community Preparedness Division (ICPD) worked with the Emergency Management Institute (EMI) to create a curriculum that serves the needs and interests of the whole community. This curriculum can serve as an initial step to learn about preparedness as a building block to more advanced preparedness training or to supplement existing efforts. The free, online Program Leaders Guide provides the following simple steps to implement these tools:

Step 1: Take the Free Online Introductory Program Course

Step 2: Identify Your Target Audience

Step 3: Determine Interests and Needs

Step 4: Select Presenters

Step 5: Prepare the Presentation

Step 6: Arrange Logistics

Step 7: Get the Word Out

If you have taken the training or if you have started a training program on a Preparedness Topic in your community, we would like to hear from you! Additionally, FEMA is available to help you develop, tailor and refine quality local community preparedness programs to fit your needs. To request assistance, please send an email to with “Whole Community TA” in the subject line.


Keep Life in Your Food Storage

With the outlook for storms and hurricanes on the rise this year, individuals should consider every facet when planning for an emergency including food storage. All living things must eat to stay healthy, so you may think that the foods you store must be of the highest nutritional content. While nutrition is very important, it is not the single most important thing to be concerned about when storing food. Your food storage program must be designed to sustain life. Here are a few suggestions for keeping life in your food storage program:

  • Store food in food grade containers that can be tightly sealed to keep bugs and moisture out;
  • Keep food, even when tightly sealed, away from gasoline, kerosene, chemicals or household cleaning products;
  • Store appropriate items as cold (45-55°) as possible for maximum shelf life;
  • Rotate food every five years; and
  • Have oxygen absorbers such as bay leaves and dry ice on hand. They can be effective in keeping bugs away.

Read more on food storage by clicking this blog article.


CERT Los Angeles Localizes to Meet the Underserved Korean Community

To meet the needs of the Korean population, Los Angeles CERT has formed and trained a growing number of CERT members to not only be active in their community but consider those who may be underserved.

CERT Los Angeles works with translators to help them understand preparedness concepts and is currently working on a just-in time incident plan. This CERT team does not allow language to be a barrier. They have learned to use Google translator as a tool to communicate when needed for English and Korean, with the support of visual aids and props.

To read more about how communities build underserved populations in their plan, join National Preparedness Coalition (NPC) and jump into the conversation.


Social Media Affects Disaster Management Playbook

Twitter and Facebook are growing ever more popular in providing individuals, first responders and the entire emergency management community with the latest disaster information. Social media was definitely a go-to source for major disasters such as Superstorm Sandy and most recently for the tornadoes in Oklahoma.

Recent research shows that the old playbooks on disaster management will need to be revised to include a social media plan. According to Scientific American , researchers have now begun compiling and publishing data to show the impact that social media has on disasters. Lawmakers and security experts are now assessing the data to see how emergency management can adapt to the trends. Compiled below are some ways to jumpstart your disaster management playbook to align with social media:

  • Build a social media strategy that is adaptable to a variety of hazard situations;
  • Establish a consistent hashtag on Twitter so people can follow the conversation;
  • Ensure you post accurate, not just quick information; and
  • Follow the conversation on social media to debunk any myths right away.

To read the article in its entirety, visit Scientific American


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About FEMA

FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

Follow FEMA online at,,, and Also, follow Administrator Craig Fugate's activities at

The social media links provided are for reference only. FEMA does not endorse any non-government websites, companies or applications.