Learn and Live! National Preparedness Month
September 5, 2012
WASHINGTON (Aug. 29, 2012) -- Hundreds of military members, DoD employees and their families listened, learned and interacted with a diverse group of government agencies during the annual Emergency Preparedness EXPO at Joint Base Myer - Henderson Hall.
The EXPO is presented by Joint Force headquarters - National Capital Region and the U.S. Army Military District of Washington's Emergency Preparedness Branch, and included an Emergency Response Vehicle Static Display, K9 Urban Search & Rescue demonstrations and a Special Reaction Static Display/ Demonstration.
Every September, the Army observes National Preparedness Month, emphasizing the importance of fostering a culture of preparedness to strengthen Soldiers and their families' ability to prevent, protect, mitigate, respond and recover from all emergencies.
"This past week, some people once again were getting overwhelmed by a hurricane in Louisiana," said Lawrence Krauser, JFHQ-NCR/MDW EXPO coordinator. "Others were better prepared as a result of surviving Katrina; realizing what they needed. If you are prepared, and know what you need to know and learn, you can keep yourself and your loved ones safe."
Through Ready Army, a proactive community awareness campaign, the Army promotes a culture of preparedness throughout the organization.
The tenets of Ready Army are: be informed, make a plan, build a kit and get involved. Ready Army also offers various sources of information and resources for successful emergency planning.
"Watching the interaction between the various participating agencies at this EXPO was great," said Krauser. "They get to know each other face to face, where in the past they may only have spoken to one another on the phone. It's always better to have traded business cards with the people in other agencies before an emergency and not at ground zero."
According to literature distributed at the EXPO, responsibility for the safety and resiliency of the Army lies with each member of the Army Family. Engagement among Army leaders, Soldiers, Families and Civilians is pivotal to highlighting the role each individual plays in preparedness. Preparedness planning serves as a force multiplier, allowing leaders to dedicate time and energy on the most significant needs of the Army community.
During the EXPO, the JFHQ-NCR/MDW Emergency Preparedness Branch also hosted the annual Force Protection Seminar at Spates Hall, providing more than 100 security experts in anti-terrorism, intelligence and operational security a platform to discuss national emergency management in the National Capital Region. Invited guests to the event were allowed time to enjoy the EXPO and intermingle with EXPO presenters and members of the public during their daylong seminar. (See related story: Share and Be Aware - NCR Force Protection Seminar)
"25 participating agencies have supported us, and they usually do it with volunteer hours," said Krauser. "All the agencies really helped getting the message out. That's exactly what we're looking for."