Save the Children marks National Preparedness Month

To mark National Preparedness Month, Save the Children staff members hosted a Prep Rally on Tuesday, Sept. 12 at Roosevelt School in Bridgeport’s South End, a neighborhood that was severely affected by Hurricane Sandy nearly five years ago.

A Prep Rally is a fun way to make disaster preparedness a priority for children and families. Save the Children created the Prep Rally as a signature part of its Get Ready Get Safe initiative, which is designed to help U.S. communities prepare, protect and care for the most vulnerable among us in times of crisis – children.

Students attending the rally brought along posters sharing messages to kids affected by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Messages included, “Bridgeport kids care about Florida kids!” and “Stay strong TX, FL and LA kids.”

“Save the Children is on the ground helping the children and families that have been affected by the recent disasters, but we also are encouraging communities like Bridgeport, in our own backyard, and communities across the country, to be better prepared for the next emergency,” said Erin Bradshaw, Save the Children’s Senior Director of Emergency Preparedness. “Our goal with Prep Rallies is to take preparedness seriously, but make it fun and memorable so that kids feel safe and empowered to help make change at home.”

Roosevelt School students participated in activities that helped them learn how to recognize emergency risks, plan ahead, gather supplies and stay safe during a disaster. Tuesday’s event included a relay race teaching the children about the proper items needed in their emergency “go bags.” The students also took a preparedness pledge and participated in the “Prep Step,” a song and dance that makes it easier for kids to remember the important safety tips learned during the rally.

Educators and community leaders interested in hosting their own “Prep Rally” can learn more at savethechildren.com/getready. Additionally, prior to Hurricane Irma, Save the Children shared tips for parents to keep their kids safe in preparation for the storm.    

Save the Children’s emergency response team has been on the ground in Texas and Louisiana, working to meet children and families’ immediate needs in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. In addition, the team is responding to Hurricane Irma, helping children and families most affected by the storm.

The Fairfield-based global humanitarian organization has established Child Friendly Spaces in evacuation shelters in areas disrupted by the storm. Save the Children’s Child Friendly Spaces are safe, designated areas where children can play, socialize and begin to recover after a disaster. They are run by trained staff members and give parents a supportive place to leave their children while attending to their family’s immediate and longer-term needs.  Save the Children is also providing shelters with portable cribs, strollers and infant and toddler hygiene supplies such as plastic wash basins, baby shampoo and lotion.

Students at Bridgeport’s Roosevelt School participate in a Prep Rally hosted by Fairfield-based Save the Children to mark National Preparedness Month on Tuesday, Sept. 12. — Photo by Susan Warner for Save the Children

Students at Bridgeport’s Roosevelt School participate in a Prep Rally hosted by Fairfield-based Save the Children to mark National Preparedness Month on Tuesday, Sept. 12. — Photo by Susan Warner for Save the Children

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