Thursday, September 26, 2013

CDC superdog teaches kids how to be prepared for disasters

Ready Wrigley
Dogs have always been a human’s best friend, but who knew they could also help kids prepare for emergencies? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response would like you to meet Ready Wrigley, a caped cartoon superdog who helps children and families learn how to prepare for the unexpected.

Ready Wrigley is the star of two free activity books — perfect for families, friends and classrooms — that kids can enjoy as they learn how to keep safe. The books come with fun puzzles, games and tips that are written at a child’s level.

In her debut activity book, Ready Wrigley focuses on teaching kids about hurricanes, such as what a hurricane is and how to spot one. Along with helpful checklists to create a hurricane emergency kit, the book tells kids what to do in case of an evacuation.

This year, a second Ready Wrigley activity book debuted that focuses on earthquakes. The book, which was released just in time for National Preparedness Month in September, explains how earthquakes happen and what to do when one occurs. Directions teach kids how to “drop, cover and hold on,” and tell them what they can expect after an earthquake.

Involving kids in your family’s preparedness activities can be key to staying safe. And teaching kids about disasters and emergencies before they occur can help them be less afraid when something does occur.

Want even more preparedness info for kids? APHA’s Get Ready campaign features free preparedness games and materials for children. Visit our kids page to download them, and check out our parents page for information on talking to your kids about preparedness.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Now’s the time to update your vaccinations

Fall is here, and that means the school year is well underway. One of the most important ways to prepare your kids for school is to keep up with their immunizations.
In observance of National Immunization Awareness Month in August, the Get Ready Report podcast team spoke with Bruce Gellin, director of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ National Vaccine Program Office, about the important role immunization plays in protectingfamiliesfrom disease.
Keep these facts about immunization from Gellin in mind:
“Vaccines aren’t only for kids,” Gellin told APHA’s Get Ready campaign. “In fact, now they are now used across the lifespan - not just for kids, but adults, pregnant women, adolescents.”
Remember: the sooner you get vaccinated, the sooner you are protected from infectious diseases. Listen to our new podcast or read the transcript.

For more information on vaccinations, check out our fact sheet series, with information on vaccines for kids, teens and adults.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Congratulations to our photo contest winners!

Thank you to everyone who submitted photos for APHA’s 2013 Get Ready Pup-Preparedness Photo Contest! We received so many fantastic, adorable photos that it was hard to choose the winners.

Congratulations go out to our 16 winning photographers and their furry companions:
  • Ashell Alston, photo of Brown
  • Patricia Baltasar, photo of Buddy
  • Patrick Benko and Jackie Benko, photo of Sadie
  • Charlene Bright, photo of Kennedy
  • Christopher Chadwick, photo of Gizmo
  • Asher Grady, photo of Lucas
  • Ann Hueber, photo of Calvin
  • Katy Krings, photo of Trinity and Neo
  • Dan and Vivian Liberti, photo of Ansel Wolfgang
  • Christopher Mangal, photo of Argo
  • Raed Mansour, photo of Chance
  • Sarah Marikos, photo of Giacoma
  • Lili McDonald, photo of Schwanson
  • Nolan Patal, photo of Rani
  • Susan Polan, photo of Tally
  • Michelle Sanborn, photo of Cooper
  • Christine Yamazaki, photo of Julian

We're working now to create a 2014 calendar featuring the winning photos, which we'll post on the Get Ready site in November. We’ll also pass out free hard copies at the Get Ready booth at APHA's 141st Annual Meeting and Exposition in Boston in November.

We'll showcase the winning photos and some of the other submissions on the Get Ready site in November, so check back then!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

APHA, communities nationwide get ready for emergencies

APHA invited neighboring offices in Washington, D.C., and communities around the country today to celebrate Get Ready Day and the importance of emergency preparedness. Through fact sheets, food and fun, communities were reminded to get ready — at APHA headquarters and beyond.

Throughout the day, more than 150 visitors from nearby offices and the surrounding community received resources and played games at APHA’s mini information fair, while the American Red Cross administered a second annual blood drive where APHA reached a goal of collecting 20 pints of blood.

Continue reading this story on APHA’s Public Health Newswire to learn what other communities did on Get Ready Day.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Get Ready Day is tomorrow!

Do you know what you’re doing for Get Ready Day this year?
Held each year on the third Tuesday in September, APHA's Get Ready Day is timed to coincide with National Preparedness Month. This year’s observance is Sept. 17.
Whether you’re on a campus, at home, at school or anywhere else, there are many ways to be part of Get Ready Day. Here are a few ideas:
  • Share information: The Get Ready campaign offers free fact sheets, including emergency preparedness information on hurricanes, heat waves, vaccines and many other topics. Use Get Ready Day as a time to learn and share with others about how to be prepared for any emergency.
  • Take the pledge: Show that you care about your community by signing the Get Ready preparedness pledge. The pledge is a promise to friends, family and community members to help make them better prepared.
  • Create a plan: What better time to create a plan for emergencies than Get Ready Day? Work with your family, friends and coworkers to find the best way to be prepared for emergencies.
  • Jump into action: Find ways to make your community better prepared: Set up a booth on campus to share materials. Host an after-school community preparedness fair. Work with a local grocery store to promote preparedness and stockpiling to shoppers through displays or fliers. Sponsor a preparedness talk at your local senior center or hold a town hall.
Here at APHA headquarters in Washington, D.C., the Get Ready campaign will be hosting a blood drive, information table and community food drive. So what are you doing?

Thursday, September 05, 2013

Get ready! It’s National Preparedness Month

It can be impossible to prevent disasters, particularly when it comes to something like tornadoes or earthquakes. But you can be better prepared for them. As September is National Preparedness Month, now’s a great time to get ready!
Here are a few quick steps to put you on the road to readiness this month:
  • Build an emergency supply kit. Make sure to include the basics, such as at least a three-day supply of food and water. Choose foods that don’t require refrigeration and are not high in salt. Other items to include are batteries, flashlights, a manual can opener, a radio, a battery-operated cellphone charger and copies of important documents.
  • Create a family communication plan so everyone knows what needs to be done before and during an emergency or in an evacuation. Review and practice the plan with all family members. If you need to evacuate, know where the nearest shelter is and how to get there safely.
  • Stay informed! Keep up to date on all the information your local emergency management officials send out during an emergency. Make sure to heed all advice from local emergency officials, such as evacuation notices.

Your organization or business can become a part of National Preparedness Month by joining the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s National Preparedness Community. Members — who include APHA’s Get Ready campaign! — pledge to promote preparedness and have access to free resources and a planning toolkit.

For more preparedness tips and tools, check out our Get Ready fact sheets, perfect to hand out at community events, on campus or at work and to share with those you care about.