The magnitude of emergencies is often matched by the power of communities. After tragic weather events, our hope is restored by the wonderful stories of people stepping up to assist and support one another.

We all hope that day doesn’t come for our community, but if it does, we have resources to help us be prepared to mitigate the damage and emotionally lift those around us. That’s why, as part of National Preparedness Month, we’re shining light on those useful resources to prepare you for hazards and train your disaster response skills.

Community Emergency Response Teams (CERTs)

CERT programs educate volunteers about hazards that may impact their area and trains them in disaster response skills, such as fire safety, search and rescue and first aid. CERTs are available nationwide and greatly enhance people’s ability to prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies. Find your local CERT here.

National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD)

Cooperation, communication, coordination and collaboration. Through those four C’s, National VOAD members represent a powerful force of goodwill, while building strong and resilient communities. To learn how you can help, visit nvoad.org/howtohelp.

National Safety Council (NSC)

The National Safety Council’s mission is to eliminate preventable deaths and injuries at work, home and out in the community through leadership, research, education and advocacy. Visit nsc.org to become a member and learn how to apply best safety practices to your life and in your community.

Set up your own community support system

Just because you’re not a part of an official emergency response team doesn’t mean you can’t make an impact on your community. Start by talking with your neighbors to learn what their major concerns would be in an emergency and brainstorm how you can mutually assist each other. One person taking initiative can lead to overwhelming results.

If you missed past National Preparedness Month stories, use these links to view how to prepare your children, how to make a plan and how to financially prepare for emergencies.