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District of Columbia Observes National Preparedness Month

Tuesday, September 15, 2009
National Preparedness month is designed to encourage people to take steps to increase their preparedness.

The District of Columbia will observe National Preparedness Month 2009 with a range of activities.

In keeping with the President’s United We Serve initiative, during the second week of September, the District sponsored a variety of service opportunities for groups and individuals. Activities included a mass casualty training exercise on September 8, conducted in cooperation with the DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services (FEMS) Department, in which volunteers in the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program received a tour and overview of FEMS mass casualty assets. 

On September 9, students at Thomas Elementary School took part in a series of workshops to celebrate the city-wide 2009 school-year kick-off of the Commander Ready program, the District’s curriculum-based approach focused on introducing children to basic principles of emergency preparedness.

On September 11, Serve DC, the Mayor’s Office on Volunteerism, partnered with the Washington DC Veterans Affairs Medical Center to commemorate the National Day of Service and Remembrance and honor veterans in our nation’s capital. The event included  a memorial tree planting; participation in the Veterans’ History Project, which seeks to capture individual veterans’ histories; and a variety of other community service opportunities.

On September 16, the DC Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency will partner with the Golden Triangle Business Improvement District to sponsor a business preparedness fair from 12 noon to 2 pm at Farragut Park, Connecticut Avenue and K Street, NW.  This annual event promotes preparedness in the workplace among both employers and employees.
Throughout the month, HSEMA and other city agencies will take part in NPM activities in a variety of venues, including a series of FEMA-sponsored preparedness fairs at federal government agencies and outreach activities sponsored by District churches, community groups and civic organizations.

View a schedule of National Preparedness Month events in the District.

National Preparedness month is sponsored annually in September by the US Department of Homeland Security’s “Ready” campaign. It is designed to encourage individuals across the nation to take steps to increase their preparedness, including making a family emergency plan, making an emergency supply kit and being informed about the different emergencies that may affect them. The District of Columbia is among the thousands of national, regional, state and local businesses and organizations that have joined the National Preparedness Month Coalition and pledged to sponsor events and activities to promote preparedness during the 2009 National Preparedness Month observance.

United We Serve, a nationwide service initiative to create a sustained, collaborative and focused effort to meet community needs and make service a way of life for all Americans, was announced by President Obama on June 22 of this year. It will culminate on September 11, 2009, with a National Day of Service and Remembrance, which will provide an opportunity to recognize past accomplishments; honor those who died on September 11, 2001, by serving in their memory; and encourage Americans to make an ongoing commitment to service.