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.

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FEMA Announces Call for Youth Council Members

Applications for the Youth Preparedness Council (YPC) are currently open. The deadline to submit an application is Tuesday, March 1.

The Youth Preparedness Council offers an opportunity for youth leaders to serve on a distinguished national council and participate in the Youth Preparedness Council Summit. During their two-year term, the leaders will have the opportunity to complete a national-level group project and to share their opinions, experiences, ideas, solutions and questions regarding youth disaster preparedness with the leadership of FEMA and national youth preparedness organizations.

Council activities and projects center around five areas of engagement: programs, partnerships, events, public speaking/outreach and publishing. Members represent the youth perspective on emergency preparedness and share information with their communities. They also meet with FEMA on a regular basis to provide ongoing input on strategies, initiatives, and projects throughout the duration of their term. 

You can find the instructions to apply  on FEMA's website. 


Georgia's PrepareAthon! for Tornado Safety

Tornadoes are Georgia's number one weather-related hazard, and they can strike anytime, anywhere, according to the National Weather Service (NWS). They are more likely to occur in March, April, and May, and with a strong El Niño – the possibility for severe weather this spring increases.

In 2015, more than 24 tornadoes touched down in Georgia. That's why many communities across the state are participating in events in support of Georgia's PrepareAthon! for Tornado Safety on Wednesday, February 3. Georgia's PrepareAthon! will occur in partnership with NWS during the statewide Severe Weather Preparedness Week.

Numerous state and local government agencies and private organizations throughout the state will encourage the public to take actions to prepare.  Some of these activities include:

  • The Henry County Emergency Management Agency is working with its Local Emergency Planning Committee to lead county residents in the Ready Henry County PrepareAthon! county-wide tornado drill. They are also holding an art, essay and video contest for all Henry County students.
  • Spalding County's outdoor warning sirens will sound to announce the beginning of Ready Spalding County's PrepareAthon! Southern Crescent Technical College is among the schools, government agencies, businesses, volunteer organizations and houses of worship participating in the county-wide drill.

Through America's PrepareAthon! , Georgia's local and state governments are combining efforts and working with communities to ensure Georgia residents are prepared and resilient in the face of disasters.


Burn Awareness Week: Don't Get Burned

February 1-7 is Burn Awareness Week. Take time with your family and friends to discuss how to prevent scalding and burns, which is especially important because every day routines such as cooking, ironing, bathing, washing clothes, and curling hair can cause burn injuries. In fact, according to the American Burn Association (ABA) most burns are started in the kitchen and bathroom.

Prevent burn injury by making changes to some of your daily routines. The National Fire Protection Association offers some recommendations to keep you and your family safe :

  • Allow microwave food to cool before eating;
  • Place hot liquids and food in the center of a table or toward the back of a counter;
  • Test bath water before you or a child get in the tub; and
  • Never heat a baby bottle in the microwave oven. Heat baby bottles in warm water from the faucet.

If you do receive a burn injury, you should:

  • Cool the burn with cool water for three to five minutes;
  • Cover it with a clean, dry cloth; and
  • Seek medical attention if needed.

You can find more information about Burn Awareness Week on the ABA website. 


Webinar: Preparing Youth for Disasters

FEMA will host a webinar next week on youth preparedness. You're invited to hear an engaging conversation on Thursday, February 4, 2016 that focuses on disaster preparedness and resilience efforts serving children and youth.

Title: Preparing Youth for Disasters
Date: Thursday, February 4, 2016
Time: 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. EST

Featured Speakers:

  • Bruce Lockwood, Acting Captain, Emergency Management Division, East Hartford Fire Department, CT; Former Commissioner, National Commission on Children and Disasters , will share background information on the unique needs of children in a disaster and the importance of preparedness planning and education.
  • Sarah Thompson, Save the Children , will exchange information on Save the Children's Prep Rally, which helps children learn the basics of emergency preparedness through engaging activities and games and can be formatted to fit your program.
  • Hilary Palotay, American Red Cross , will share information on the Pillowcase Project, a preparedness education program for children in grades 3–5.
  • Captain Rob Tosatto, Medical Reserve Corps & Jane Shovlin, Arizona Health Occupations Students for America (AZHOSA) , will share information on the partnership between Medical Reserve Corps and HOSA and how to engage youth in contributing to school and community preparedness.

How to Join the Webinar:

We hope that you will be able to join us on February 4!


Webinar: STEP into Preparedness

Join the Federal Emergency Management Agency on Thursday, January 11, 2016, as we present the newly updated Student Tools for Emergency Planning (STEP) materials and share tips and lessons learned from teaching the program.

STEP is a classroom-based emergency preparedness curriculum that teaches fourth and fifth-graders about emergencies and how to create a disaster supply kit and family emergency communications plan.

Title: Step into Preparedness
Date: Thursday, February 11, 2016
Time: 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. EST

Featured Speakers:

  • Louise Gorham, Health Imperatives
  • Tod Pritchard, Wisconsin Emergency Management
  • Robert Scata, Connecticut Emergency Management and Homeland Security

How to Join the Webinar:

We hope that you will be able to join us on February 11! 


Dates for Your Calendar!


Disclaimer: The reader recognizes that the federal government provides links and informational data on various disaster preparedness resources and events and does not endorse any non-federal events, entities, organizations, services or products. Please let us know about other events and services for individual and community preparedness that could be included in future newsletters by contacting:

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.

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