Challenge yourself with #30Days30Ways Game during September #NatlPrep Month

August 31, 2015

September is National Preparedness Month (NPM or #NatlPrep) and we – along with thousands of private, public and nonprofit organizations – are encouraging Americans to take time to help your community get better prepared for disasters and emergencies of all kinds.

NPM wraps up with America’s PrepareAthon! as a national day of action (on 9/30 or anytime) when individuals, families, organizations and businesses have preparedness events, drills and training sessions to help turn “knowing into doing”.

A really fun way to get involved with NPM is to participate in the 30 Days, 30 Ways disaster preparedness game.

#30Days30Ways was started by the Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency (CRESA) in WA with the goal of challenging people to do one basic task per day to enhance their personal readiness for emergencies.

Each September, CRESA posts one simple readiness task each day and winners are selected from among the participants. The tasks are creative, fun and educational using an interactive social media based approach to reach an audience who may not be normally reached through traditional community events.

Check out this year’s 30 Days, 30 Ways promo video and scroll down to learn how to get involved and play…

How do I play?

Anyone can participate in the 30 Days, 30 Ways Preparedness Challenge — in fact, the game has had players in over 44 states and 38 countries — and there are 2 ways to play this year…

Daily Challenges:

  • A daily task will be posted by 7am PDT to 30Days30ways website every day during September.
  • The challenge will be cross-posted on Facebook and on Twitter @30Days_30Ways
  • You can complete any task, any time as long as they are submitted by midnight on Sept 30th.
  • You may enter as often as you like.

Weekly Challenges:

  • This Year there will be 4 Weekly Challenges posted each Monday.
  • You have until the following Sunday evening at Midnight Pacific Time to submit your entry.
  • These Bonus Challenges will judged by a team of Emergency Management Coordinators at CRESA for creativity, relativity to the topic, popularity and how best it answers the overall theme of the game.

What can I win?

The number of winners and Amazon Gift Card prizes are based on the funds donated for this game. If you’d like to contribute to the #30Days30Ways crowdfunding campaign, visit their 30Days30Ways 2015 Preparedness Challenge page. (Any amount is helpful and all money donated goes directly into prizes awarded to those participating in the challenge.)

Learn more about the 30 Days, 30 Ways Preparedness Challenge at www.30days30ways.com or follow them on Facebook  or Twitter @30days_30ways  or #30days30ways.


New book pricing (but honoring old prices for #NatlPrep Month) + funding ideas for schools and volunteers

August 18, 2015

disaster booksAs we wrote in our July enews, for over a dozen years we have discounted our disaster preparedness and first aid manual up to 75% off the $14.99 list (or $3.50 U.S. each + freight) for agencies, nonprofits, volunteers, schools and others, but unfortunately rising costs have been piling up the past few years.

Freight costs for ground shipments typically average about 50 cents per book plus there are handling charges and other fees we’ve absorbed for groups over the years.

New pricing (but not just yet)

To offset some of these costs we need to raise our prices a little bit, and we want to simplify things for everyone going forward so…

As of July 2015 our 266-page IT’S A DISASTER! paperback (either standard red books or custom printed ones in bulk) will be $4.50 U.S. each delivered* (70% off list on 10 copies & up).

We still provide FREE customization ~ either with peel & stick labels on our standard red books … or … you can personalize covers and first 12 full color glossy pages in the print process on 1,000 units and up.

And if you want to upgrade your order to add 48 to 288 extra full color glossy pages (up to 300 custom pages in front / back), the upgrade price is $7.00 U.S. each delivered*. * = Note: Delivered price in continental U.S.

And as before, custom CDs and flash drives are unique ways to distribute this life-saving data using our 280-page ebook and pricing depends on quantity needed and size of media needed.

HOWEVER… since September is National Preparedness Month and 9/30 is America’s PrepareAthon, we plan to honor the lower $3.50 + freight price for our 266-page book (either standard red books [10 copies & up] or custom books [1,000 units & up]) … or $5.50 delivered price for larger, upgraded custom versions through October 2015.

Basically all you need to do is ask for the old price and we’ll give it you!

Books make great educational giveaways for employees, volunteers, members, customers and local communities, and our customizable tool can help clear out leftover grant dollars that are time sensitive.

Also … groups needing smaller quantities can always purchase our standard red books and personalize them with free peel & stick labels. We can ship red books and custom labels within 24 hours of your order anytime so you don’t have to wait for a custom print.

Learn more about free customization, view some samples or call FedHealth at 1-888-999-4325 (and mention you’d like our old price!)

Also feel free to download a free mini ebook portion of our IT’S A DISASTER! book and scroll down or call Fedhealth at 1-888-999-4325 (in U.S. or Canada) to learn more.

Funding ideas for volunteers, schools & youth groups

Keep in mind a creative way to raise funds for groups and get preparedness data out to local communities is to partner up with local Chambers, Rotary Clubs, Jaycees or others and sell ads inside books. Encourage businesses to include discounts or freebies on products and services to help incentivize the public and save them money on supplies and daily needs like groceries, dry cleaning, car repairs, lawn care and more!

For example…

Say a school, Student Club or CERT wants 5,000 custom books with 288-page color glossy upgrade (total 300 custom pgs) and collects $750 for each FULL page color ad on 250 pgs (leaving 50 pages for local data)…

Partners buy 250 pgs of color ads: $750/ad x 250 pgs = $187,500

Cost for 5,000 books @ $7.00 ea delivered* = $35,000

Total funds leftover for project = $152,500 … and more funds could be raised by collecting more per ad, offering premium placement on covers, etc. And share funds with your Chamber or Rotary partners so everyone benefits!

Note: A $750 ad is only 15 cents per book that goes into 5,000 homes.

~~~~~~~~~~~

And, if you do above example between now and Oct 2015, you could get the old $5.50 delivered book price mentioned above and save $2,500!

Download a 2-page handout explaining these funding ideas  … or learn more about our easy Referral Program … and, if you know an agency, nonprofit, school, church, Scout troop, or volunteer group who could benefit from our preparedness book and/or funding ideas, please have them visit www.itsadisaster.net/ppp.html or call Fedhealth at 1-888-999-4325 for more information.


Hot Weather Health Emergencies (heat exhaustion versus heat stroke)

July 1, 2015

What is Extreme Heat? Temperatures that hover 10 degrees or more above the average high temperature for that area and last for several weeks are considered “extreme heat” or a heat wave. Humid and muggy conditions can make these high temperatures even more unbearable. Really dry and hot conditions can cause dust storms and low visibility. Droughts occur when a long period passes without enough rainfall. A heat wave combined with a drought is a very dangerous situation!

Doing too much on a hot day, spending too much time in the sun or staying too long in an overheated place can cause heat-related illnesses. Know the symptoms of heat illnesses and be ready to give first aid treatment.

There are two major types of heat illness – HEAT EXHAUSTION and HEAT STROKE. If heat exhaustion is left untreated it can lead to heat stroke. Both conditions are serious, however, heat stroke is a major medical emergency and getting victim’s body temperature cooled down is more critical than getting fluids in their body. Heat stroke can lead to death.

Things to watch for…

  • Heat Cramps
    • Muscle pains and spasms (usually first sign that body’s having trouble with the heat)
  • Heat Exhaustion
    • Cool, clammy, or pale skin;
    • Light-headed or dizzy and weak;
    • Racing heart;
    • Sick to the stomach (nausea);
    • Very thirsty or heavy sweating (sometimes)
  • Heat Stroke (also called Sunstroke) –
    • Very hot and dry skin;
    • Light-headed or dizzy;
    • Confusion, drowsiness or fainting;
    • Rapid breathing and rapid heartbeat;
    • Convulsions, passes out or slips into a coma

What to do…

  • Get victim to a cool or shady place and rest.
  • Lightly stretch or massage muscles to relieve cramps.
  • Loosen clothing around waist and neck to improve circulation and remove sweaty clothes.
  • Cool down victim’s body – put wet cloths on victim’s face, neck and skin and keep adding cool water to cloth… or if outdoors, use hose or stream. Also, fan the victim or get inside air-conditioned place.
  • Have victim sip cool water (NO alcohol – it dehydrates!)

If victim refuses water, pukes or starts to pass out:

  • Call for an ambulance or call 9-1-1.
  • Put victim on their side to keep airway open.
  • Keep cooling down their body by placing ice or cold cloths on wrists, neck, armpits, and groin area (where leg meets the hip) or keep adding water to cloths. Also fan the victim.
  • Check victim’s ABCsAirway, Breathing, & Circulation.
  • Stay with victim until medical help arrives.

Remember, HEAT STROKE (a.k.a sunstroke) is a medical emergency and can cause the victim to slip into a coma — getting a victim’s body temperature cooled down is more important than getting fluids in their body!

Disclaimer: These procedures are not substitutes for proper medical care. Above data extracted from IT’S A DISASTER! …and what are YOU gonna do about it? by Bill and Janet Liebsch


Volunteer Firefighter crisis (statistics, obstacles + some creative recruitment resources)

March 21, 2015

A dramatic decline in the number of volunteer firefighters, particularly young ones, threatens the ability of small departments to provide an essential public service.

Most people may not think this potential crisis impacts them, however almost 70% of firefighters across the nation are volunteers.

And it’s not just about fighting fires since most calls are for emergency medical services.

For the first time in 28 years, the majority of volunteer firefighters in the U.S. are over the age of 50, according to a firefighter profile released in November by the National Fire Protection Association. And while the number of on-call firefighters is decreasing, the demand for fire and rescue services is increasing.

Some Volunteer Fire Service statistics

The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) says in 2013 there were an estimated 30,052 U.S. fire departments and 19,807 of them were all volunteer.

According to the National Volunteer Fire Council

  • Volunteers comprise 69% of firefighters in the United States. Of the total estimated 1,140,750 volunteer and paid firefighters across the country, 786,150 are volunteer.
  • Communities served by volunteer firefighters depend on them to be their first line of defense for many types of emergencies. Volunteer firefighters are summoned to a wide array of emergencies across the country every day including fires, emergency medical incidents, terrorist events, natural disasters, hazardous materials incidents, water rescue emergencies, high-angle and confined space emergencies, and other general public service calls. The public relies on the volunteer emergency services to be their first line of defense in these emergencies. Volunteers spend an enormous amount of time training to prepare for these emergencies.
  • Small and mid-sized communities rely heavily on volunteer firefighters. Small communities (populations under 10,000) across the U.S. are typically protected by all volunteer departments. In some cases, however, these communities have hired a few paid firefighters to assist. Mid-sized communities (populations above 10,000) are typically served by combination volunteer and paid departments. Large communities (populations over 100,000) are most often protected by combination volunteer and paid departments that consist of primarily paid staff. There are few strictly paid fire departments in the U.S., but those that exist are primarily found in very urban areas.


Recruitment Obstacles

The Citizen-Times.com writes in 1980, a firefighter needed only 36 hours of training. Today that number has grown to 250 hours to obtain firefighter certification. Earning the certification can take up to a year for someone working a regular job and taking the training in the evenings.

Because fire departments have expanded the scope of their duties to include answering emergency medical calls, many firefighters also are emergency medical technicians, which requires another 100 to 250+ hours of training.

As Mount Pleasant Fire Department Chief Larry McRae recently explained at a County Commissioners meeting, “We require them to attend numerous hours of training. We look for people to be willing to go into a structure fire or approach a burning vehicle to save someone’s life. We ask them to expose themselves to contagious disease, use their personal vehicles, pay for their costs to replace their clothing, be available to respond at any time day or night, seven days a week in any kind of weather and under potentially stressful and life-threatening circumstances.”

“And we are asking them to do this for no pay,” McRae said. “And then we ask them to work at their volunteer fire department fundraisers.”

NVFC states volunteers typically contribute 20 to 100 hours per month or more.

McRae said without volunteers, the fire departments in the county can’t offer the fire and rescue protection to residents they are commissioned to offer. Aside from the safety repercussions, insurance service office ratings can cause home insurance rates for homeowners to go up several hundred dollars a year in communities without a fire department or volunteer fire department.

Creative recruitment ideas & tools

Below are some creative recruitment ideas, resources and vids to share with family, friends, co-workers, local officials, schools and youth groups. If you can contribute your time and energy, please consider becoming a volunteer or at least talk to your local Fire Department to see if there are ways to support them operationally and/or financially.

And speaking of financial assistance… please share our programs associated with our customizable IT’S A DISASTER! preparedness and first aid manual since ideas can help fund and support volunteers, agencies and others. Download a 2-page overview with funding examples (PDF) or call Fedhealth at 1-888-999-4325.

Maine Pension Program: Maine State Federation of Firefighters is working hard to try and recruit more volunteer firefighters, and to promote state legislation that aims to support the firefighters.  L.D. 164, An Act To Establish the Maine Length of Service Award Program, would create the framework for a statewide pension-type program under which volunteers such as firefighters or emergency medical service providers eventually would receive a pension. The bill would pay for the program through a tax on consumer fireworks writes Bangor Daily News.

The SERVE Act: This bill, introduced in 2013 and one of the National Volunteer Fire Council’s legislative priorities, is designed to help local volunteer emergency services agencies recruit and retain personnel. It would provide a $1000 tax credit to volunteer firefighters and volunteer emergency workers. Two other bills (Volunteer Responder Incentive Protection Reauthorization Act (VRIPRA) and Volunteer Emergency Responders Tax Deduction Act) are also up for a vote in Congress. Read more at WBNG.com and IAFC.org

WHHC free room & board: A volunteer fire department in Lycoming County Ohio is looking for recruits and has something that could entice young firefighters writes WNEP.com. The Willing Hand Hose Company offers free room and board for college students who will respond to ambulance calls, fire calls, accidents and more. The fire house has been upgraded with all new amenities, including an updated kitchen, living quarters, and a TV room. Not only are the live-ins getting free room and board but they are also getting professional training which would cost them thousands to do on their own.

Fire Corps: The NVFC has also been instrumental in the launch of Fire Corps, a national initiative to recruit community members into local fire and EMS departments to perform non-emergency roles. This allows department members to focus on training and emergency response while at the same time increasing the services and programs the department can offer. Fire Corps is a component of the DHS’s Citizen Corps initiative and is administered on a national level by the NVFC. For more information, visit www.firecorps.org .

1-800-FIRE-LINE: In addition, the NVFC administers the 1-800-FIRE-LINE national recruitment campaign in an effort to boost the ranks in the volunteer fire service both operationally and non-operationally. Community members can call the toll-free 1-800-FIRE-LINE number from anywhere in the country to learn about the firefighter, EMS, and Fire Corps opportunities in their community. The campaign also includes resources for fire departments and state fire associations to implement and market the campaign. Learn more at www.1800fireline.org.

NVFC Retention and Recruitment tools: The National Volunteer Fire Council has many helpful resources, Best Practices, videos and PSAs and other tools on their Retention and Recruitment section.  Also learn more about other NVFC programs and services at www.nvfc.org or call 1-888-ASK-NVFC.

National Junior Firefighter Program Recruitment Video: Junior firefighter program advisors and department leaders can use this short video, which features juniors participating and explaining their interest in junior firefighting and their plans for their future, to recruit youth for their program at the local level. The video can be downloaded and taken to schools, community organizations, or department open houses to educate youth and adults about the benefit of junior firefighter programs.

Why I Chose Fire: Next Generation Volunteer Video: This 9-minute video features inspirational interviews with diverse first responders about why they love volunteering and what inspired them to get involved in the fire/EMS services. The videos articulate what potential volunteer firefighters need to know to be successful today and in the future. Click here to download a free copy of Why I Chose Fire: Next Generation from the Fire 20/20 web site, and learn how to get a customized version for your department or organization.


Above article appeared in our Fedhealth March 2015 enews


Need custom preparedness books? Going to print soon

February 20, 2015

Several agencies and groups need custom books for their communities so we are trying to schedule a large bundled print by April 2015.

If you or any agencies, businesses or nonprofits you know would like a customized version of our 266page disaster preparedness and first aid manual, please call Fedhealth at 1-888-999-4325 to discuss your needs.

Realize we bundle 1,000 unit & up custom jobs together and print 20,000+ books at a time. Also … we can do multiple versions of books for projects (1,000 & up per version) so you can customize covers and pages by area, county, division, agency, etc. (Fedhealth also supports small quantity orders using our red books and free stickers as explained below.)

The entire cover and title can be changed in the print process, and first 12 pages can be customized with local data, maps, reporting-in procedures, etc. in full color on glossy paper now.

We discount our books 50% to 75% off list (or as low as $3.50 U.S. each + freight) and customize them for free.

And, if needed, agencies, nonprofits and groups can upgrade to add 48 to 288 extra color glossy pages (for a total of 300 custom pages) to include advertisements, coupons or sponsorship messages, grant specific data and more for $5.50 US each delivered ($6.50 for businesses).

Another advantage is this Public-Private Partnership tool provides grantees about a $3 or $4-to-$1 return on match due to the deeply discounted Government price and other donated goods and services. And funds can be committed within hours. Fedhealth is a small business, sole source registered on GSA’s SAM database, Ariba and various local and state procurement systems.

c4l-booth-IL12-2Books make great educational giveaways for your employees, volunteers, members, customers and local communities esp. at events like PrepareAthon, health fairs, public safety expos, etc. Plus our customizable tool can help clear out leftover grant dollars that are time sensitive.

Also … groups needing smaller quantities can always purchase our standard red books and personalize them with free peel & stick labels. We can ship red books within 24 hours of your order anytime so you don’t have to wait for a custom print.

Learn more about our customizable book and our fundraising ideas for volunteers, schools and nonprofits … or call FedHealth at 1-888-999-4325 to discuss your needs.

 


Should I stay or should I go? (Evacuation and sheltering tips when away from home)

January 22, 2015

Evacuations are quite common and happen for a number of reasons — fires, floods, mudflows, hurricanes, or chemical spills on the roads or railways. Most preparedness data for the general public focuses on things to do around your home before, during and after an evacuation.

But what if you are at work or school or traveling? Things can happen near your workplace that can force evacuations or sheltering-in-place as seen recently in Paris when terrorists were holed up at a business … or during active shooter incidents at workplaces or schools. And sometimes accidents happen when riding public transit like Washington DC and New York City experienced recently with fires at their train stations.

Whenever these types of emergencies or incidents happen hopefully people take a moment to reflect on some things like… Continue reading our Jan 2015 enews


Anatomy of a Hangover (how a body typically reacts to large doses of alcohol)

December 31, 2014

Most of us have probably been there … puking or “praying to the porcelain god”, massive pounding headache, queasy stomach, extreme thirst and more … after partying too hard the night before.

So before you imbibe at holiday celebrations and social functions, consider reading the below graphic to learn how a body typically reacts to large doses of alcohol. (And keep in mind it doesn’t necessarily have to be large amounts since a few sips might set off one’s chemistry into motion too.)

We also included some tips from GMA’s Dr. Savard on how to make the morning after a bit more tolerable.

MCT: Hangover anatomy

If you want to avoid a hangover, obviously the easy answer is … don’t drink. But according to GMA contributor Dr. Marie Savard, there are some things drinkers can do to help make the morning after more tolerable…

  • Sip slowly (so your stomach can absorb the drink slowly rather than getting pounded).
  • Eat chips or foods with fat in it to help slow the absorption of alcohol.
  • Drink water throughout the day / evening (or a glass between each drink) and avoid carbonated drinks since they can increase alcohol absorption.
  • Consider taking a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) such as ibuprofen or Alka Seltzer before drinking to decrease inflammation. Also … Dr. Joel Saper, founder and director of the Michigan Head-Pain and Neurological Institute, says “never take acetaminophen for a hangover. The combination of Tylenol plus alcohol equals death in some people.” That’s because acetaminophen stimulates an enzyme that can damage the liver. The combination can overwhelm the liver’s capacity to remove toxins from the body.1

Happy and safe holidays to all … and to our military, first responders and volunteers who work day in and day out to help keep us safe — thank you for your continued service and sacrifices. Take care, j & B

Source: Fedhealth Dec 2012 enews


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,738 other followers

%d bloggers like this: