National Preparedness Month was created in 2004 and occurs every September.
It was created by the U.S. Government, sponsored by FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) under the Department of Homeland Security, to remind citizens to prepare for emergencies at home, work and within their communities. Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, Hurricane Katrina and other devastating natural disasters, the U.S. Government has realized the importance of its citizens to be prepared to survive and respond during emergencies.
A large part of the initiative is to have extra supplies, survival gear and medical supplies. However, it is important to remember that we must train to fully be prepared for an emergency.
Having been in the fire service for the last 18 years, I recall the massive amount of training we had to do before we could be ready to answer emergency calls. I like the military idea of "train like you fight, fight like you train." The importance of training with your survival gear or receiving first aid medical training can't be understated.
So as we move through September and therefore move through National Preparedness Month, remember to train for and be ready to survive or respond to emergencies. Always remember the best tools and equipment are useless in untrained hands.