Category: Movement And Tracking

Barbecue Confidential: Show Me Great BBQ NOLA - February 25, 2012 by dharkanjhel

Great BBQ in Cajun Country? Columnist’s Note: This editorial may be geared for passionate and experienced barbecue enthusiasts only. This column isn’t intended to make anyone angry or single-out any particular establishment, but merely report my honest opinion of…

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The Gospel According to Jesus - February 23, 2012 by dharkanjhel

While traveling in Central America, I had the opportunity to worship at an international, interdenominational, English-speaking church. The congregation contained Africans, Italians, Spaniards, Latinos, Americans, and Asians. We sang old Irish hymns and modern, Australian worship choruses. The service…

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Thinking Outside the Candy Box - February 14, 2012 by dharkanjhel
Posted by: Michael Widomski, Public Affairs

You’re familiar with the candy hearts with the sayings, “Be Mine,” “Cutie Pie” or “Sweet Talk.” What if there were hearts that read “Be Prepared” or “Get Ready”?

Washington, D.C., Feb. 13, 2012 -- This Valentine's Day show your sweetheart you care and help get them prepared.

Every year on Feb. 14th, the streets are usually filled with people carrying flowers and boxes of chocolates.

This Valentine’s Day, why not think outside the candy box and truly demonstrate your devotion by helping loved ones be prepared? Think about it. In the end you’ll also be helping yourself by ensuring that the ones you love are around for a long time to come.

So, how can you do this?

All of us here at FEMA have provided some suggestions below that we believe will be much better than a balloon-shaped heart (which eventually deflates) or the conventional dozen red roses (which eventually wilt and wither). These items pair well with any Valentine’s Day plans.

  • Give your main squeeze a disaster supply kit to go with the chocolates you may have already bought; get started with one gallon of water per person per day for three days, and a non-perishable food supply per person for three days. Disasters can strike faster than cupid’s arrow, and if your loved ones aren’t prepared, they won’t have time to get the supplies they need in the midst of the chaos of a disaster. What better way to show your love than to help your sweetie prepare?
  • If you’re feeling less romantic or are more family-oriented this Valentine’s Day, consider preparing all the loved ones in your life for the unthinkable. When you’re at dinner, tell your family you’d like to sit down together afterward to create an emergency plan. Some things you should discuss are where to meet in an emergency and who to contact. You won’t regret this quality time spent planning to protect your family.
  • Do you send a greeting card or bouquet of flowers to your mom each year? This year, follow up with an in-person visit, and help them to winterize their home or vehicle. Use this holiday to fulfill the promise of visiting more often, and at the same time you could also help your whole family learn about their risk to flooding and how to reduce it. Spring flooding is just around the corner, but it’s never a bad time to reduce our risk to life or property that is brought on by the onslaught of floods.
  • If you’re getting into the Valentine’s spirit and want to share the love with your community, this might be a good time to get involved with emergency management training or to join a local volunteer organization. For example, you could get your CPR certification or volunteer to bring meals and preparedness information to seniors. (HINT: This also makes for a great date idea, and you’ll impress your date with your thoughtfulness of others).
  • Finally, if you normally buy treats for your four-legged friends for Valentine’s Day, continue to buy them treats…they don’t even realize what Valentine’s Day is. However, this is an opportunity to be selfish and take the steps needed to ensure your pets are prepared. Keep supplies on hand for your pets such as food, water, and medication. Don’t forget, faithful companionship is a two-way street. They show you love and affection all the time…you should do the same in return and ensure they are prepared.

This Valentine’s Day, show you care – help prepare yourself, your main squeeze, your family, friends and pets for a potential disaster. Show the love – Be Ready!

FEMA Blog

The Sound of Silence - February 13, 2012 by dharkanjhel

It is golden. It is a virtue. It is more musical than any melody, rest for the mind, and sometimes it has the loudest voice. It is often the best possible answer, a friend that never betrays, and it…

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Faith; Far More Than An Opiate - February 12, 2012 by dharkanjhel

I am sometimes suspicious of how we employ our faith. Don’t get me wrong, faith is important to me, and I have given my life to it. But sometimes I treat my faith like it is a medicine cabinet…

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What We’re Watching: 2/10/12 - February 11, 2012 by dharkanjhel
Posted by: Alexandra Kirin, Public Affairs

At the end of each week, we post a “What We’re Watching” blog as we look ahead to the weekend and recap events from the week. We encourage you to share it with your friends and family, and have a safe weekend.

Weather Outlook
This weekend, our friends at the National Weather Service predict heavy snowfall in the Great Plains and parts of the Northeast. Severe drought conditions are expected to continue throughout parts of the South and Southeast.

Although there are no other significant weather threats, we encourage you to monitor your area’s local forecast. Stay up-to-date on your local forecast by visiting weather.gov or mobile.weather.gov on your mobile device.

New Training Course: Integrating Emergency Management Education into Your Institution
We wanted to highlight a new training course being offered by our Emergency Management Institute in partnership with the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities. EMI will be hosting the new course aimed at creating a more diverse population of emergency management professionals.

The E390 Integrating Emergency Management Education into Your Institution is a two-day course targeted for Hispanic-Serving Institutions, department chairs of emergency management -related disciplines such as sociology, geography, public administration, or psychology.

For more information on the training and application form on-line, visit our website.

FEMA Think Tank
Deputy Administrator Serino will host the second Think Tank conference call next Friday, Feb. 17 at 1:00 p.m. EST (10:00 a.m. PDT) from San Francisco, CA. The Deputy Administrator will be in Silicon Valley (the Mecca of technology) to discuss the use of technology and social media in emergency management.

The call is open to the public, so anyone interested can join the call. The call in number is 800-369-1986 and password is Think Tank February. You can access the captioning for the event and follow the discussion and ask questions on Twitter by searching and using #femathinktank.

Tech @ State Recap
Here are a few photos from “Tech @ State” of Administrator Fugate speaking about the role of social media in disaster response and the many challenges emergency managers face when trying to create real-time awareness.

Washington, D.C., Jan. 30, 2010 -- Craig Fugate, FEMA Administrator, discusses the range of challenges that exist when trying to create real-time awareness, especially in the context of breaking news or events, crisis response and citizen engagement at Tech @ State. The event was hosted by the U.S. Department of State.

Washington, D.C., Jan. 30, 2010 — Craig Fugate, FEMA Administrator, discusses the range of challenges that exist when trying to create real-time awareness, especially in the context of breaking news or events, crisis response and citizen engagement at Tech @ State. The event was hosted by the U.S. Department of State.

Washington, D.C., Jan. 30, 2010 -- Craig Fugate, FEMA Administrator, discusses the range of challenges that exist when trying to create real-time awareness, especially in the context of breaking news or events, crisis response and citizen engagement at Tech @ State. The event was hosted by the U.S. Department of State.

Washington, D.C., Jan. 30, 2010 — Craig Fugate, FEMA Administrator, discusses the range of challenges that exist when trying to create real-time awareness, especially in the context of breaking news or events, crisis response and citizen engagement at Tech @ State. The event was hosted by the U.S. Department of State.

Preparedness Makes Sense for Indian Country
We wanted to share a video with information specific to Indian Country with tips on how to prepare for emergency situations. No matter where you live, it is important to prepare for an emergency.

FEMA Blog

Step Into the Water - February 10, 2012 by dharkanjhel

I met Candice on a Florida sidewalk while walking to the beach. She was a young, blonde, attractive woman, and she was hovering close behind me as if she had something to say. She had something to say alright…

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Supporting Residents in Alabama After the January 22 Tornadoes - February 9, 2012 by dharkanjhel

Posted by: Joe Girot, Federal Coordinating Officer, Alabama Severe Storms and Tornadoes

I’m back in Alabama again, leading FEMA’s response to another set of tornadoes that hit Alabama Jan. 22-23. Though not as many people were affected by this round of tornadoes, it’s not about the numbers for me. For me, knowing we can help even one disaster survivor makes my FEMA work worthwhile and makes me glad to be able to help the people of Alabama who have been affected by these storms.

Trussville, Ala., Feb. 5, 2012 -- Damage in the city of Trussville during the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

Trussville, Ala., Feb. 5, 2012 — Damage in the city of Trussville during the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

Since President Obama made the disaster declaration for Alabama on the afternoon of Feb. 1, I’ve been going full-throttle. The next morning I met with Alabama Governor Robert Bentley in Montgomery for the formal signing of the federal-state agreement. I told the Governor that returning to Alabama felt like coming home to family, and he said that over the last year, he couldn’t have asked for more cooperation from FEMA.

Montgomery, Ala., Feb. 2, 2012 -- Joe Girot (L), FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer (FCO) signs the Federal - State agreement for assistance with Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (c) and the Director of Alabama Emergency Management Art Faulkner (r). FEMA is supporting the recovery from the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

Montgomery, Ala., Feb. 2, 2012 — Joe Girot (L), FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer (FCO) signs the Federal – State agreement for assistance with Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (c) and the Director of Alabama Emergency Management Art Faulkner (r). FEMA is supporting the recovery from the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

Within 72 hours, my team set up five disaster recovery centers in Chilton and Jefferson counties. Community Relations staff fanned out into the hardest-hit areas and distributed information on the new disaster recovery center, or DRC, locations and guidelines on FEMA registration.

Center Point, Ala., Feb. 3, 2012 -- Duane Marusa, Community Relations Specialist, explains the registration process to a storm survivor in Center Point, Alabama. FEMA is supporting the recovery from the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

Center Point, Ala., Feb. 3, 2012 — Duane Marusa, Community Relations Specialist, explains the registration process to a storm survivor in Center Point, Alabama. FEMA is supporting the recovery from the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

Center Point, Ala., Feb. 3, 2012 -- Mary Smith, Community Relations Specialist, explains the registration process to a storm survivor in Center Point, Alabama. FEMA is supporting the recovery from the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

Center Point, Ala., Feb. 3, 2012 — Mary Smith, Community Relations Specialist, explains the registration process to a storm survivor in Center Point, Alabama. FEMA is supporting the recovery from the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

As of today, FEMA has more than 1,000 in funding ready to assist the 132 individuals and families whose registrations have already been approved. We have 288 property inspections completed and 397 visits have been made to the five DRC’s. The Small Business Administration has staff at all the DRC’s and has already distributed 452 loan applications for homeowners and 61 for businesses.

I got to speak Sunday (in Spanish!) about FEMA’s Individual Assistance programs during a Spanish-language service at the First Methodist Church of Clanton. About 80 people were there, and I asked them to spread the word about registering for help and visiting the DRC’s located in Clanton and Maplesville in Chilton County.

Clanton, Ala., Feb. 5, 2012 -- Joe Girot, FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer (FCO) encourages the congregation of Iglesia Metodista San Juan during their service to register for assistance with FEMA. FEMA is supporting the recovery from the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

Clanton, Ala., Feb. 5, 2012 — Joe Girot, FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer (FCO) encourages the congregation of Iglesia Metodista San Juan during their service to register for assistance with FEMA. FEMA is supporting the recovery from the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

Clanton, Ala., Feb. 5, 2012 -- FEMA Community Relations Specialists hand out information translated in Spanish to assist non-english speaking survivors. FEMA is supporting the recovery from the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

Clanton, Ala., Feb. 5, 2012 — FEMA Community Relations Specialists hand out information translated in Spanish to assist non-english speaking survivors. FEMA is supporting the recovery from the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding that damaged or destroyed parts of Alabama during the period of January 22-23, 2012.

All of us working here are proud to be part of Alabama’s emergency management team, and working with human services agencies, local government officials, and tireless volunteers to get Alabama – once again – back on the road to recovery.

FEMA Blog

It Must Be Raining - February 9, 2012 by dharkanjhel

Months ago a friend handed me a little book entitled “Have A Little Faith,” written by Mitch Albom. Honestly, it sat on my shelf for a long time gathering dust. It’s not that I was uninterested; I was plowing…

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Community Preparedness Starts with YOU! - February 2, 2012 by dharkanjhel
Posted by: Paulette Aniskoff, Director, Individual and Community Preparedness Division

It’s the beginning of a New Year and we are excited so many of you have taken part in our January activities. Two weeks ago we honored the Individual and Community Preparedness Award winners as Champions of Change at the White House and last week we celebrated the 10th anniversary of the Citizen Corps Program. As we continue to promote what you do, we also want to provide you with new resources, so I am proud to say the Individual and Community Preparedness Division (ICPD) hosted one of the most highly attended Community Preparedness Webinar Series webinars on record.

More than 1,800 individuals registered for the FREE Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) webinar. Every state within the U.S. was represented and FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate even stopped by to say a few words. He talked about the importance of these new CERT tools and resources for CERT volunteers, local program managers and those wishing to start a CERT program in their own locality.

The webinar highlighted new, accessible versions of the CERT Basic Training Course, recently made available in Spanish, low vision and in screen reader. These materials serve to expand the reach of CERT into the Whole Community in terms of preparedness.

CERT National Office Director Rachel Jacky, presented on the new CERT Program Manager and CERT Train-the-Trainer Courses. The program manager course helps prepare current and prospective CERT managers/coordinators to create and sustain an active CERT program, while the train-the-trainer course provides a standard curriculum for states, regions and the Emergency Management Institute to train CERT instructors.

For all of those who participated, thank you for your continued support. For those who were not able to participate, you can view the webinar and find the recording here.

Remember, Community Preparedness Starts with YOU!

Find us on twitter and make sure to sign up for our FREE weekly news digest. Stay in touch and receive updates such as the ones below:

  • Join us for the next monthly Ready call on Tuesday, February 7, at 3:00 ET/2:00 CT/1:00 MT/Noon PT.
  • Join your colleagues in viewing, contributing, and commenting on conversations about emergency preparedness, disaster response and recovery, and other emergency management topics. Don’t miss out – check out FEMA’s online community today — it’s where ideas come to life!

Visit the CERT website to find your nearest CERT program.

FEMA Blog

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