5 Steps to Build an Emergency Kit

We’ve all heard we should be prepared for an emergency…especially in the Pacific Northwest. Three of our current clients are working to put together a kit and we thought it would be helpful to use our 5 Step Organizing Process to make the task a little less daunting and inspire you to take action! Already have a kit? Awesome! Are you able to help your neighbors or other family members put a kit together?

Step 1 – Create a Plan

Use a checklist from Ready.gov or City of Portland to get started. Consider building a kit that contains essentials as well as water and first aid. In our experience, starting to put together an emergency kit can be daunting given the amount of items suggested and feelings that come when you think about needing to use the kit. Just start with a small kit of a few essentials and you’ll be well on your way and building momentum. Add to it when you have time and energy to revisit your kit.

Step 2 – Make Decisions

Think about what you already have in your home and what you might need to buy. Print off a checklist and gather items you already have. Make a shopping list or order online for the things you still need. Don’t forget to have a container or crate to fill with your supplies.

Step 3 – Find a Home

Where will your kit live? There is much debate about the best place to store your kit – outside, inside, garage are all good options. Think about what makes sense for you and your family to find your kit a home.

Step 4 – Label

Print out a list of the items in your emergency kit, quantities and any expiration dates. If you are leaving items in different parts of your house (let’s say you have a tent, but are leaving it with camping instead of putting it in your emergency kit), list those items and their location too.

Step 5 – Sustain

Have items in your kit that expire? Put a note on your calendar to review your kit and switch out expired items. Review your kit every so often to ensure your family is covered. Maybe next year you’ll have a new puppy and want to make sure you include food and water for your new furry family member.

Have you started your emergency kit? Share a photo on our Facebook page!