It’s been a tumultuous time for the many that have been affected by the recent hurricanes, whether it be in Texas, or soon to be Florida.
Tragedies often bring out the best of those hoping to help and many are offering their time to volunteer, but it’s important for those wanting to volunteer their time to not make a trip to the affected areas spontaneously.
“You need to go with an affiliated group,” says Shawano County Emergency Management Director Natalie Easterday. “That way you’re with somebody, you’re covered kind of under their umbrella and they can plug you into where people need help. I know a lot of people have good intentions, but make sure you’re matching up with either your church group or another large organization heading down there.”
Easterday says it’s important to make sure you’re requested before heading down to help. It’s also not recommended to donate supplies.
“Cash is more preferred to trusted organizations versus goods unless they’re being requested,” she said. “A lot of people send clothes. That just makes a donation management issue down in the affected area.”
Although we don’t need to worry about hurricanes in Wisconsin, it’s still important to have a personal preparedness plan for other emergencies.
“Do you have that emergency kit if you don’t have power for three days? If you’re not all together if that storm happens, how do you communicate with your family members? Do you know where you’re going to meet? We are a rural county. We are very self-reliant. However, we should still take that ten minutes to talk to your family to know what you’re going to do if that storm impacts you.”
For tips on an emergency preparedness kit, contact Shawano County Emergency Management.